Pain-taste synesthesia

An alternative name could be algesic-gustatory synesthesia

This type of synesthesia appears to be rather more common than pain-smell synesthesia, but it is still a rare type. It consists of different types of pain each triggering a specific taste sensation.

While other types of synesthesia with a taste concurrent (lexical-gustatory, for example) tend to produce very specific tastes connected with foods that were eaten in the synesthete’s childhood, pain-taste synesthesia seems to have more of a tendency to induce generic tastes like sweet, bitter, metallic, sour or salty, and/or combinations of these basic flavours.

Here are some descriptions written by people with this type of synesthesia:

“Body aches, like back pain, taste sweet and bitter. Cuts taste kinda salty and sour, like pan-seared fish with lemon. I got stung by a bee yesterday and it tasted like strawberries!"

(Source: A response in an AMA (“ask me anything”) on Reddit/AMA. 2020.)

Different types of pain have flavours, like sharp pain tastes like metal, aches taste like charcoal, dull pain tastes like hot water.”

(Source: This post on Reddit/Synesthesia. 2019.)

Pain tastes bitter for the most part, but if it’s a headache it’s a pretty mild flavor.”

(Source: This comment on Reddit/Synesthesia. 2020.)

Related types of synesthesia:





This page last updated: 06 July 2021


  1. Scratches taste like mac n cheese to me

  2. I experience a specific taste when a bruise is touched; it's the same sicky taste I get when i have a bad cold