10 Most Common Causes Of Sore Back

Sore back at the officeIt is very common to suffer from a sore back. Sedentary life, disease, injury… even smoking can be a cause of back pain.

We’ve put together for you a list of 10 very common causes of sore back. We believe that being educated can help you make better decisions and reduce the risk of experiencing back pain.

Why not adjust your lifestyle if it helps you live pain-free… right?

Sore Back Cause #1: Heavy Lifting

Lifting weight improperly is a very common cause of a sore back. From a handful of grocery bags at your home or a file box at your office, make sure you never overdo it.

You have to pay extra attention when lifting heavy items. Try to minimize excess load on your back muscles and make sure you use your core and leg muscles in accord.

Sore Back Cause #2: Sedentary Life

Among the most common causes of sore back is sedentary life. Every day we spend more and more time in front of a computer screen, for work or pleasure, and that takes its toll on our backs.

A study at Temple University suggests that even texting on a mobile device creates more pains in our shoulder, necks and backs.

So, make sure you take breaks. Make it a habit to get off your seat every hour. Walk around your office, go get some water, and do a few neck exercises.

You should also take a look at different ergonomic equipment for your office like chairs, keyboards and footrests. They can help you maintain better posture and reduce injuries.

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Sore Back Cause #3: Smoking

It might not cross your mind, but smoking takes its toll on your sore back. Cigarettes aren’t just bad for your heart and lungs. Smokers have a higher incidence of recurring back problems and the causes are many.

Nicotine restricts blood flow to vertebrae and discs which may cause them to age more quickly or even break down. Smoking may also reduce the body’s ability to absorb and use calcium, leading to osteoporosis-related problems.

So, think twice when you light it up. You can get help and customize your smoking cessation plan at smokefree.gov.

Sore Back Cause #4: Degenerative Disc Disease

This condition occurs when the discs (the spongy pieces of cartilage that sit between the vertebrae on our spine) gradually wear away and shrink. Discs can also tear or become injured causing a sore back and –depending on the situation– even chronic pain.

 Sore Back from Degenerative Disc Disease

Sore Back Cause #5: Spondylolisthesis

Another condition that involves the spine, spondylolisthesis can occur when the joints and ligaments have a hard time keeping our spine in the proper position. When a vertebrae moves more than it should, it can slide in and out of position. In some situations, bones can press on the spinal nerves and cause a sore back.

Spondilolysthesis Cause for Sore Back

Sore Back Cause #6: Injuries

Sprains and fractures are another common cause for short-lived or even chronic pain.

Sprains are tears in the discs (ligaments) that support the spine which can occur from twisting or lifting improperly. Fractures are often caused by osteoporosis, a condition that weakens the bones.

We also shouldn’t rule out severe accidents and falls as a common cause of sore backs.

Sore Back Cause #7: Genetics

Scientists are also considering genes to hold the secret to why one person may develop lower back pain while another doesn’t.

“If you take twins,” Andersson says “one who is doing heavy physical work and one who is doing desk work — and you compare their MRI exams, they are essentially identical. This tells you that genetic factors are very important.”

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Sore Back Cause #8: Lack Of Exercise

Ignoring your core can be a significant cause of a sore back. And when we talk about core, we don’t mean getting the perfect six-pack. Your core muscles support all of your movements, so keeping them in shape can help you avoid all sorts of pain.

Unlike crunches, which are focused mostly on abdominal muscles, other core exercises can strengthen several spine-supporting muscle groups. Next time you are at the gym spend a few minutes doing lunges, squats, and planks.

Core muscle exercise can prevent sore back

Sore Back Cause #9: Bad Sleeping Position

If you think about it, we usually sleep around 8 hours—that’s about a third of the day. If we don’t pay attention to our sleeping position we may be putting additional tension on our muscles.

Face-up is one of the best sleeping positions as it puts the least amount of tension on your back and core muscles. Try to avoid sleeping on your side or on your face.

Sore Back Cause #10: Shoes

I’m sure the first thing that crosses your mind is high heels and stilettos. But flat shoes can cause back pain, too.

A great solution is to wear shoes that provide good arch support. However, if you need to wear something more special, you could look for orthopedic insoles or carry a second pair of shoes to work.


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