Upper back pain is uncomfortable and inconvenient at the best of times. Your back might feel tight, sore and difficult to move. You may have lost your full range of motion, which can make work and life that little bit more difficult. What causes such pain? There are a number of different reasons why you might be feeling sore in the top of your back.
One of the most common causes of upper back pain is due to poor posture. We have an amazing capability to strengthen our muscles based on frequent exercises and workouts. Unfortunately, you can also condition your muscles in a negative way by using them incorrectly.
If you are frequently standing or sitting with incorrect posture for too long and over a long period of time, you may find that your muscles become deconditioned.
For example, if you sit at a desk all day and sit in an incorrect position, you may experience muscle strain in the top of your back which can lead to a weakening of your muscles. Over time, the pressure of gravity on your slouching and poor posture can lead to further aches, pains and complications.
One of the best ways to resolve upper back pain due to bad posture is to ensure your posture is correct and to take regular breaks from sitting. If your upper back pain is due to slouching whilst working at a desk, ensuring you have an ergonomic workstation is best. You can do this by ensuring you have a chair that offers comfort but also keeps you sitting in the correct position. Your desk can also be adjusted accordingly.
Depending on your circumstances or workplace, adjusting your equipment may not be possible. Instead, make sure you take regular breaks and perform stretches of your neck, shoulders and back.
Overusing your muscles
Overusing your muscles is another common reason to experience upper back pain. If you play sports that use the same muscles repeatedly over time, this may be a cause of your pain. Sports such as cricket, baseball and possibly tennis can cause upper back issues. These sports rely on using the upper body for serving, pitching or bowling.
Other activities that overuse the muscle can also cause issues. A person who has to complete tasks that repeat a certain motion all day can also get upper back pains and strains. Lifting items repeatedly or moving in one particular motion all day can cause the pain. If you notice you need to repeat a certain action all day for your work, one of the first signs may be muscle tightness, strains and irritation. If you start to get these symptoms, it’s important to address it so as to reduce your chance of chronic upper back pain.
Rest is one of the best ways to resolve the pain. Heat or ice packs can also help the muscles to recover. If this isn’t possible (due to work circumstances), taking breaks as often as possible or finding ways to reduce the number of times the motion is conducted is also advisable. You may also find that a physical therapist can assist with exercises that can improve your strength and flexibility in the upper back muscle group.
If you have injured yourself, you can experience upper back pain. There are a wide number of ways and injuries that can cause this pain. Some examples include:
- Lifting a heavy item incorrectly
- Repeatedly moving your back in a particular way
- Working out too much
- Falling over
- Being in a car accident
- An incident in the workplace
Any kind of trauma that occurs to your body in some shape or form may lead to an increased strain or pain in the upper back region.
Pain from an injury can range from mild discomfort to chronic and severe pain. Most pains from an injury happening at the time of the incident, but some pains may not occur until the next day.
If you have any aches or pains on your back following an injury, it’s always advised to seek medical attention from a health professional. They will be able to determine if you need to seek further treatment or testing to ensure there are no serious issues or nerve damage.
When it comes to any form of upper back pain, there are a number of reasons why you may be experiencing the pain. If the pain is consistent, doesn’t go away, you are unsure of why it is hurting or gets worse over time, always be sure to seek medical attention and advice from your doctor.