Pain is a signal that something is bad. Discomfort, however, is many times not enough of a reason to change our priorities.
It is the confusion between pain - negative, natual alarm - and discomfort that can bring life and activities to a halt.
Risk of pain is another story. Pain is usually not a death sentence. So non fatal pain is acceptable, but not good. Yet, taking a small risk to come to pain, is perfectly reasonable. Again, it is the confusion between pain and possible pain that can bring life to a halt.