A NP I was seeing gave me the following pain scale to make it easier for me to understand where my pain was, and to help my medical professionals understand where I was at. She told me to feel free to share it. I keep a copy in my purse all the time with extra copies to give to friends and leave behind at medical offices.
Pain Scale, simplified
0 - Pain Free
Mild Pain- nagging, annoying, but doesn't really interfere with daily living activities
1-Pain is very mild, barely noticeable. Most of the time you don't think about it.
2 - Minor pain. Annoying and may have occasional stronger twinges
3 - Pain is noticeable and distracting, however, you can get used to it and adapt.
Moderate pain - Interferes significantly with daily living activities
4 - Moderate pain. If you are deeply involved in an activity, it can be ignored for a period of time, but it is still distracting.
5 - Moderate strong pain. It can't be ignored for more than a few minutes, but with effort you still can manage to work or participate in some social activities.
6 - Moderately strong pain that interferes with normal daily activities. Difficulty concentrating.
Severe pain - Disabling, unable to perform daily living activities
7 - Severe pain that dominates your senses and significantly limits your ability to perform normal daily activities or maintain social relationships. Interferes with sleep.
8 - Intense pain. Physical activity is severely limited. Conversing requires great effort.
9 - Excruciating pain. Unable to converse. Crying out and/or moaning uncontrollably.
10 - Unspeakable pain. Bedridden and possibly delirious. Very few people will ever experience this level of pain.