Im confused with meaning of 결림. Is it "stabbing pain" (like a needle) or "stiff part of body" (like when every slow move is hard and painful)? Or does it mean both?

Same with 쑤씸. Is it stabbing pain (like a needle) or dull (nagging) pain (like pain in legs after 2 hours running marathon)?


According to Naver dictionary, "결리다" means:

숨을 크게 쉬거나 몸을 움직일 때에, 몸의 어떤 부분이 뜨끔뜨끔 아프거나 뻐근한 느낌이 들다.

I think it's a sudden deep pain that makes it hard for you to move a part of your body. Personally, I sometimes had it when I was a boy - after sudden sprinting sometimes you'd feel a stabbing pain just beneath your ribs to the side, so much that you could barely walk - I would say "옆구리가 결린다".

This article might be helpful:

고개를 숙인 자세로 오래 일한 후 어깨 근육에 담이 결렸다고 병원을 찾아오는 분들이 많습니다. 근육이 딱딱하게 뭉쳐지면서 통증을 유발하는 근막통증후군이 아닌가 싶어 근육을 풀어주는 침 주사도 여러 번 맞아봤지만, 그 효과가 오래 가지는 않는다고 합니다.

On the other hand, "쑤시다" is much more generic - the verb originally means "to poke" and move around - e.g., imagine picking your nose, or kids poking a heap of leaves with sticks. It can mean a dull stabbing pain, or even generic muscle pain or arthritis. If it's a more acute(?) sense of pain (like poking with a needle), people may say "찌르는 것처럼 아파요."

Disclaimer: I'm not a doctor. Please don't take these as medical definition. :P


“결림”nominal ← “결리다”verb

  1. 숨을 크게 쉬거나 몸을 움직일 때에, 몸의 어떤 부분이 뜨끔뜨끔 아프거나 뻐근한 느낌이 들다.

“갈비뼈가 결리다.”

“결림” (← “결리다”) is usually associated with muscle stiffness, which gives you somewhat dull pain. Though, by definition, it could also mean sudden sharp pain (like that you sometimes feel in your chest when you breathe in deep, if you know what I mean.). This is different than “pins and needles” (“저림” ← “저리다”).

“쑤심”nominal ← “쑤시다”verb

  1. 신체의 일부분이 바늘로 찌르는 것처럼 아픈 느낌이 들다. (Translation: “to feel like needles are poking part of one’s body.”)

“머리가 지끈지끈 쑤시다.”

Poking with needles? Hmm, actually I’m not sure about this word. I think the focus of this word is not on pain being sharp, but it’s more on being repetitive. You could use this word to describe kind of throbbing pain, dull or sharp, like migraine. The example sentence is also describing a headache.

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