Usually, sitting gives us a break from the stress of the day. We sit periodically when we’re on our feet often and expect to find the seated position comfortable and relaxing. This isn’t possible for folks whose back pain is triggered when they sit down. If sitting causes or worsens your back pain, it could be because you have an underlying condition that needs to be addressed. We discuss them here.
What causes back pain when sitting?
- Degenerative disc disease. The spine has bones (vertebrae) and discs. The discs are cushions that prevent bones from coming into direct contact. Discs also set space between the vertebrae for nerve roots to pass through. When discs wear down, they lose height and the nerve space compresses, resulting in discomfort.
- Herniated disc. Being cushiony and gel-like, the spinal discs may be forced to shift when under a great deal of stress. Stress may be a spinal misalignment, an injury, or obesity. In any situation, a disc that is herniated can press on nearby nerve roots, causing pain.
- Sciatic nerve damage. Many people know the signs of sciatic nerve inflammation or damage. The buttocks cramps, pain shoots down the back of one leg, or the leg feels generally weak. Sciatica often stems from pressure on the large sciatic nerve somewhere in the lumbar spinal segment. Sitting can increase nerve pressure and intensify the pain.
- Spinal stenosis. Like the discs of the spine may change with age and wear-and-tear, so can the spinal canal. Often, older individuals experience nerve compression that results from shrinking in the spinal canal, the center of the spine through which all nerve roots travel.
Back Pain Requires Special Care
People often assume that chronic back pain will need to be treated with surgery. This can prevent them from getting the care they need while it may still be highly successful. Back pain rarely causes a doctor to immediately recommend surgery. In most cases, conservative treatments are prescribed for several months before more invasive treatments are considered.
At Innovative Spine Care Center in Tampa, we have helped numerous people achieve meaningful improvement in comfort. Dr. Watson’s use of thulium laser energy shuts down pain receptors in the affected part of the spine, thus helping patients regain an optimal quality of life.