Why Does Stepping On a Lego Hurt So Bad?

This week Reactions explains the science behind the soul-crushing pain of stepping on a Lego. We’re talking nociception today folks, and the chemistry of how these little two gram blocks pack enough punch to send you into orbit.

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Smidi – Intergalactic Funk
Sam Leopard – Je Trace Ma Route

Kirk Zamieroski

Executive Producer:
Adam Dylewski

Scientific consultants:
Brian Walitt, Ph.D.
Sophia Cai
Darcy Gentleman, Ph.D.


Intro to pain pathways – https://www.ucl.ac.uk/anaesthesia/StudentsandTrainees/PainPathwaysIntroduction

On Pain Signaling – https://www.mentalhelp.net/articles/what-causes-pain/


Basics of Pain – http://neuroscience.uth.tmc.edu/s2/chapter06.html

What legos are made of – http://www.wired.com/2015/07/sorry-perfect-lego-brick-may-never-eco-friendly/

Chemistry of Legos – https://jameskennedymonash.wordpress.com/2014/07/15/how-are-lego-bricks-made-the-chemistry-of-lego/

A Delta and C fibers – http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20886070

Pain transmittion in the periphery – http://www.anaesthetist.com/icu/pain/Findex.htm#pain3.htm

Glutamate’s role in nociception – http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11465012

Molecules involved with pain – http://thebrain.mcgill.ca/flash/i/i_03/i_03_m/i_03_m_dou/i_03_m_dou.html

Nociceptors and Danger – http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17678850

Ever wonder why dogs sniff each others’ butts? Or how Adderall works? Or whether it’s OK to pee in the pool? We’ve got you covered: Reactions a web series about the chemistry that surrounds you every day.

Reactions is produced by the American Chemical Society.

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