Pain, though unpleasant, is your body's warning system. The tingling, tightness, or stiffness indicates that overworked or damaged muscles and nerves need attention. Prolonged pain—lasting three months or longer—is considered chronic. Chronic pain strikes any place in the body, most commonly in the lower back, and ranges from mild to severe. It can be sharp, shooting, burning, aching, or marked by stiffness. While pain following injury or disease is normal, persistent pain can affect your personal and professional life.