Talking about general pains and aches

Posted by Manjusha Filed in English speaking

Here are some common expressions that you can use to describe general aches and pains.

General aches and pains
Grammar Notes

To talk about feelings that are going on at a particular moment, simple or progressive forms can be used.

Ill and sick

Ill is often used to mean unwell in British English. In American English ill is unusual except in a formal style. Note that we use ill after a verb.

In Attributive position (before a noun), many British people prefer to use sick. Sick is also the normal informal American word for unwell.

Be sick can mean vomit.


The names of illnesses are usually uncountable in English, including those ending in -s.

The can be used informally before the names of some common illnesses such as the measles, the flu; others have no article.

Minor ailments

The words for some minor ailments are countable: e.g. a cold, a sore throat, a headache. However, toothache, earache, stomach-ache and backache are more often uncountable in British English. In American English, these words are generally countable.

More English speaking lessons

Phrasal verbs


If you don't find what you want here feel free to contact me.

All Rights Reserved.