Lower Left Back Pain: Possible Causes and Quick Fixes

lower left back painOh, Crap.  That back is flaring up again. Why does it always flare up on the weekend?

Now you will have to wait until the doctor’s office opens.  Or pay three times as much to go into urgent care.  There’s probably not much that they can do, anyhow, except prescribe better pain pills​.

Back Pain Is No Laughing Matter​

For most of us it is a recurring frustration. It costs time from work.  And even worse, you can’t do anything but lay in bed and pray that it will go away.

My goal with this site is to help you start getting relief right away.

And, if you want, help you to find permanent relief.​

Let’s Talk About Your Lower Left Sided Back Pain

Is It Muscle Pain, Nerve Pain, Kidney Pain, or Something Else?

For most people it is either going to be kidney pain or muscle and nerve  pain. It’s going to take some sleuthing to figure out just what is going on.

Simply put, kidney pain typically comes in waves accompanied by a fever, pain while urinating and chills.

Pain from the neuromuscular system is often constant and dull.  Conversely, it may be sudden and sharp.  ​

Most sudden kidney pain is caused by kidney stones, and there is no mistaking a kidney stone when you get one. ​

Special Circumstances For Women

Women have a few more reasons for lower left-side back pain.  These can include things such as:

Uterine Fibroids

​These non-cancerous growths are virtually harmless.

Women with Fibroids often have heavy and irregular periods, and may already be receiving treatment for them.

The pain you may be experiencing can be from a fibroid out-growing its blood supply, causing it to choke and die — an extremely painful process.

Ovarian Tumor

​ As Expected, this is a more serious condition.  The pain is typically located on one side of the back.  The pain results from a growing tumor that is pressing on nerves.

The good news is, ovarian tumors only effect about 1.37% of women.

However, they need to be caught as early as possible for a good prognosis

Normal Pregnancy

During the course of a pregnancy ​your body undergoes incredible stress and your posture changes.

If that’s not enough, when your body releases relaxin – the hormone that loosens the ligaments in the pelvis in preparation for birth, it can also loosen the ligaments in the spine, allowing them to shift. ​

Causes For Neuromuscular Back Pain On The Lower Left Side

All right.  So if you have ruled out the other possible causes of pain, let’s look at the other reasons why your back may be hurting.

The first thing to realize is that your back will most often “go out” to one side or the other. For me, that is typically the right side.  Since I’m right-handed, I tend to abuse that side of my back more.

While right vs. left-handedness is not the only thing to consider, it pays to notice how you move through your day, and what motions make the pain worse.  This can help you identify areas to improve ergonomics to prevent future flare ups ​

Injury To Muscle

If you are an active person, it is possible that you injured a muscle.  Maybe you tweaked it on that gold swing.  Or maybe that last lunge should’ve been done with a lighter weight.

Muscles will tense when they’ve been injured, and can pull the spine out of alignment.  If you consider how large our leg muscles are, versus how small the back muscles are in comparison, it makes sense.

Healing from such an injury involves not only treating the lower back, but stretching and healing the originally injured muscle.

Improper Muscles

As we go through life, we find ourselves repeating motions over and over again.  Our body adapts to those motions, helping us to become more efficient.  Unfortunately, that can lead to major problems in other areas.

For example, if you have a desk job (and a long commute to work, and like sitting down to watch TV), your hip flexors will shorten.  This makes you better at sitting, but if you try walking, it can pull your spine out of joint.

Try dashing to your car in the rain? Now you are screwed.

​Sitting on Your Wallet

Your body wants to keep your head centered over your pelvis.  Because you insist on putting that 2″ thick wallet full of receipts that you keep promising to sort out, ​you are forcing your spine to twist in order to seek the level posture that is natural.

Over time, this can lead to some pretty phenomenal pain.

Your Mattress Is To Blame

I realize you probably don’t feel like being out of bed right now, but sometimes your mattress is the culprit. After all, you do spend 1/3 of your life in bed.

A worn and sagging mattress can cause the spine to curve too much — especially for back or side sleepers.

For side sleepers, try putting a pillow between your legs to help keep the pelvis open and balanced​.

For back sleepers, fold a pillow under your legs to help elevate them.

For stomach sleepers, use a firm mattress that will not let your spine curve as much. ​

Sciatica Pain

Sciatica pain is probably the worst thing I have ever endured.  It started off as a little tweak in my lower back, and then my butt started to go numb.

Before it was over, I had 2 days of incredible pain in my low back with my right leg so numb that I could hardly walk on it.

The Sciatica nerve runs right through the pelvis, and if it gets crimped can lead to a whole host of pain. After 2 days of this, I started spending a few minutes every hour to do some basic stretches to help relieve the ​pressure.  These exercises, combines with some time spent on the inversion table, did wonders for relieving my pain.

​Spondylolisthesis

​This is where one of the vertebra has shifted forwards or backwards from the one above it.  Most often cause by a defect or fracture in the vertebral arch.  In older adults it is often due to arthritis and the shift in the joints the arthritis is causing.

This is a more serious ​disorder and will likely need physical therapy, if not surgery to relieve.

Other Degenerative Back Diseases

There are other back disorders such as spinal stenosis and a slipped or herniated disc.  While painful, these do not often present with pain localized on just one side of your back.

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