Constipation and Lower Back Pain: The Link You Need to Know
Lower back pain is a common complaint among most adults. Sleeping in the wrong position, sitting for long periods, or engaging in strenuous physical activity can contribute to lower back pain.
Read more: How To Sleep Better With Lower Back Pain?
But did you know that constipation can also cause lower back pain? While it may not seem obvious initially, there is a clear link between constipation and lower back pain. Read on to understand this connection and what you can do to address it.
What Is Constipation and How Does It Occur?
Constipation is a condition in which the body has difficulty passing stool. This can happen for several reasons, such as lack of dietary fiber, not drinking enough fluids, changes in activity levels or diet, and certain medications. People with constipation often feel bloated and uncomfortable because they cannot pass the hard stool that builds up in their intestines.
Here’s how it occurs:
The body doesn’t absorb enough water in the intestines, so stools become complex and difficult to pass. Once the stool is hardened, it can press into the walls of the colon, leading to inflammation and pain. Constipation also reduces muscle contractions necessary for normal digestive function, reducing the amount of food that can be digested properly. This can cause a buildup of toxins in the body, leading to fatigue, discomfort, and lower back pain.
In addition to the physical symptoms associated with constipation, it can also have psychological effects. People who are severely constipated may become frustrated or depressed due to their inability to pass stool.
How Does Constipation Cause Lower Back Pain?
Constipation and lower back pain often go hand-in-hand. This is because constipation can strain the abdomen, hips, and lower back muscles, leading to pain in these areas. Additionally, when stool becomes hard to pass due to constipation, this can put extra pressure on the spine and muscles in the lower back. This pressure can lead to pain and discomfort.
Moreover, lingering constipation can cause other issues like acid reflux, heartburn, bloating, or indigestion that may contribute to lower back pain. Furthermore, if you are straining during a bowel movement due to constipation, this can also lead to a muscle spasm in the lower back, which may cause an episode of lower back pain.
The risk of developing constipation-related lower back pain is higher if you are overweight or obese, have a sedentary lifestyle, don’t exercise regularly, and eat a diet low in fiber. Therefore, it is essential to make lifestyle changes and dietary modifications if you suffer from chronic constipation to reduce your risk of developing lower back pain.
If lower back pain persists despite making these changes, speak to a medical professional who may suggest other treatment options, such as medication or physical therapy. Physical therapy can help strengthen the abdominal muscles, reduce pressure on the spine, and improve overall posture. Additionally, if psychological or emotional factors are to blame for your constipation, therapy may also help address these issues. If you think constipation is causing your lower back pain, it’s essential to get evaluated and treated to reduce discomfort and improve your quality of life.