KudoZ home » English » Psychology

sticking your tongue in a cavity

English translation: probing where it hurts

Advertisement

Login or register (free and only takes a few minutes) to participate in this question.

You will also have access to many other tools and opportunities designed for those who have language-related jobs
(or are passionate about them). Participation is free and the site has a strict confidentiality policy.
16:32 Mar 31, 2007
English to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Psychology
English term or phrase: sticking your tongue in a cavity
Can anybody help me with this idiom?
The writer is talking about a certain kind of attitude and says: "But this attitude is like STICKING YOUR TONGUE IN A CAVITY or becoming preoccupied with an emotional problem"

Many thanks in advance!
Anita M. A. Mazzoli
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:43
English translation:probing where it hurts
Explanation:
When we have a cavity (dental carie) we tend to keep touching/exploring it with the tongue, even though it would be better to leave it alone. Perhaps the author is suggesting that it's better not to dwell on/think constantly about a physical or emotional problem, but rather get on with living.
Selected response from:

JaneTranslates
Puerto Rico
Local time: 18:43
Grading comment
Thank you Jane and thank you all!!!


4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

Advertisement


Summary of answers provided
4 +17probing where it hurts
JaneTranslates
3 +3just makes the situation worseWill Matter
3 +2see commentsMelzie


Discussion entries: 3





  

Answers


8 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +3
sticking your tongue in a cavity
just makes the situation worse


Explanation:
It seems that maybe they mean an attitude that just makes the pre-existing situation worse / more painful / harder to deal with. An unproductive or self-defeating attitude, in other words. HTH.

Will Matter
United States
Local time: 15:43
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 12

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  JaneTranslates
1 hr
  -> Thank you.

agree  Caryl Swift: making it worse by obsessing over it
1 hr
  -> Thank you.

agree  Rusinterp
11 hrs
  -> Thank you.
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

13 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +17
sticking your tongue in a cavity
probing where it hurts


Explanation:
When we have a cavity (dental carie) we tend to keep touching/exploring it with the tongue, even though it would be better to leave it alone. Perhaps the author is suggesting that it's better not to dwell on/think constantly about a physical or emotional problem, but rather get on with living.

JaneTranslates
Puerto Rico
Local time: 18:43
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4
Grading comment
Thank you Jane and thank you all!!!


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  kmtext: It becomes an obsession.
3 mins
  -> Right...exactly. As willmatter posted while I was writing mine, it just makes the situation worse.

agree  Tony M
6 mins
  -> Thanks, Tony!

agree  Can Altinbay: Of course!
10 mins
  -> I guess we all do it, huh? Thanks, Can!

agree  Evi Prokopi
31 mins
  -> Thanks, Evi.

agree  Dave Calderhead
33 mins
  -> Thank you, Dave.

agree  Caryl Swift: e.g.all the painful, useless, things we do when a relationship ends - check mail, check phone for messages etc. etc.
59 mins
  -> Yes, exactly. Thanks, Caryl!

agree  Mark Nathan
1 hr
  -> Thank you, Mark.

agree  kironne: "meter el dedo en la llaga" Totally ;)
1 hr
  -> Yes. Thanks, kironne.

agree  xxxAlfa Trans
3 hrs
  -> Thank you, Marju.

agree  Rachel Fell
3 hrs
  -> Thank you, Rachel.

agree  Rusinterp
11 hrs
  -> Thank you, Rusinterp.

agree  Vicky Papaprodromou
11 hrs
  -> Thank you, Vicky.

agree  Suzan Hamer
18 hrs
  -> Thsnk you, Suzan.

agree  Els Spin: Ouch! Silly thing is, you can't help doing it, but when you've been to the dentist, the obsession is gone within hours.
19 hrs
  -> Yep! Thank you, Els.

agree  Will Matter: Right. Good explanation.
1 day56 mins
  -> Thank you very much, willmatter.

agree  Erich Ekoputra
1 day10 hrs
  -> Thank you, Erich.

agree  NancyLynn: another idiom: picking at a scab (what a pleasant image, eh?)
1 day21 hrs
  -> Eeeuuuu! But you're right, that's a closely-related concept. Thanks, NancyLynn.
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

17 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +2
sticking your tongue in a cavity
see comments


Explanation:
A filling of mine fell out a while ago, and I can't stop worrying the hole. The denteen isn't exposed so I'm in no pain but, it's very difficult to stop myself fiddling at the gap with my tongue. A totally useless action but I seem to be overly aware of the cavity.
I hope my 'sad' story helps ;-)
Basically somthing that isn't getting worse in itself but that is out of proportion

Melzie
Local time: 00:43
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Caryl Swift
1 hr
  -> thank you

agree  Rusinterp
11 hrs
  -> thank you
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)




Return to KudoZ list


Changes made by editors
Mar 31, 2007 - Changes made by Kim Metzger:
Term askedSTICKING YOUR TONGUE IN A CAVITY » sticking your tongue in a cavity


KudoZ™ translation help
The KudoZ network provides a framework for translators and others to assist each other with translations or explanations of terms and short phrases.



See also:



Term search
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search