Earlier this year GSK published the results of its first ever global survey into body pain and revealed the UK is the country where most people feel pain in Western Europe.

The Global Pain Index surveyed 7,000 people aged 18+ across four continents and 14 countries to learn more about how body pain is experienced across the world.

According to the poll, almost all of us in the UK experience body pain (93%), with two-thirds (67%) feeling pain every week and a massive one in ten (12%) saying they feel in pain constantly.

The survey goes on to reveal the impact of pain on our work, mood, family and social lives.


One surprising fact identified is that people from the UK are most likely to allow pain to stop them enjoying a night of romance. Over half (55%) said they cannot have sex because of body pain.

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But our problems don’t stop with our love lives. Pain stops us from enjoying life and doing the things we love. Two thirds of us (67%) say pain affects our social lives and four in ten (40%) admit pain has forced them to give up their hobbies.

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Pain is putting family life under pressure too; over half of the parents surveyed (57%) believe they would be doing a better job without pain.

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We are feeling the pain professionally too; in the UK more than 6 in 10 people (62%) say pain impacts their professional life, including career.

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It should come as no surprise that pain is hurting our emotional wellbeing too. Six in ten (61%) say pain can significantly impact mood – with 40% frustrated, 36% annoyed, 27% cranky and 32% feeling old. Almost half of us (47%) find we cannot feel happy when we are in pain.

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Despite all the evidence that pain is really hurting us, of all the nationalities surveyed, the UK are the most likely to simply accept pain, with three quarters of us (75%) seeing pain as just part of life.

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So why are we giving up the things we love rather than treating our pain? If you’re experiencing acute or living with chronic pain, we may be able to help you.
Making small adjustments to your medication or simple changes to your lifestyle can help you to better manage your pain and improve the way you feel.

Our pharmacies offer a FREE Pain Management Service, a one-to-one consultation to find out more about your symptoms and offer the most suitable advice for you.