San Diego Chiropractor’s Point of View
Middle (Thoracic) back pain is just as common as upper (Cervical) back pain, in fact, many times cervical pain and thoracic pain occur together because they are anatomically closely tied. That being said, middle back pain is not quite as common as lower (Lumbar) back pain.
However, mid back pain may be more severe in intensity and longer in duration when it does occur. Affecting the thoracic vertebrae area of the back and in some cases the rib cage, mid back pain the potential to be debilitating and excruciating causing intense pain with coughing, laughing or taking deep breaths. Because of these symptoms some people would say that middle back pain is worse than neck or lower back pain.
Your back includes 30 small bones referred to as vertebrae. Those small bones are aligned on top of each other, and attached to each other by ligaments, tendons, and muscles and are collectively known as the spinal column. The spinal column allows for flexibility of your body while protecting your spinal cord. This stack of interconnected vertebrae is segmented into four areas. From the base of your skull down to your pelvis. These four areas contain your:
- Cervical vertebrae– the top 7
- Thoracic vertebrae– the next 12
- Lumbar vertebrae– 5 more
- Sacrum and coccyx– 6 fused bones at the spine’s base
- Mid back pain occurs in the second region– the thoracic vertebra
Middle Back Pain Causes
Pain from the Thoracic Spine is likely to be triggered by one or more of these issues:
- injury or trauma to the muscles and ligaments of the thoracic area
- scoliosis (curvature of the spine).
- habitually poor posture.
- lack of adequate exercise.
- lack of muscle conditioning.
- too much sitting.
- past injuries that haven’t properly healed.
- improper lifting techniques.
Mid Back Pain – Let’s take a Look at Common Causes:
- Poor lifting methods often create injury and mid back pain. Learn correct lifting practices, and apply them always.
- Mid back pain can be triggered by injury or trauma somewhere in the thoracic vertebrae area. Significant injury can result if the spine is shifted or twisted in any way contrary to what its allowed by design.
- If you are lifting something, and you do so incorporating a sharp twist into that motion, you can wrench a muscle, or tear a ligament in the back.
- Back Ache and Pain is not normally an indication of scoliosis in pre-teens, but scoliosis patients can experience a muscle form of middle of the back pain. Such mid back pain happens due to the muscles on the outside of the curve are operating at an increased rate attempting to regulate the curve. When muscles are overworked, they ache. Mid back pain is the result.
- Bad posture is yet another possible source of mid back pain. Bad posture puts the muscles of your thoracic area under undue stress which can irritate nerves. Consistently over stressing those nerves sends pain messages to the brain.
- Mid back pain can occur when the back doesn’t get enough exercise. Adequate exercise is needed to keep the back strong and flexible. As with all of the body’s muscles, your back muscles need to be strong to support your back and avoid mid back pain.
- Stretching is an important part of exercise. Remember to stretch your back slowly to warm up the muscles before undertaking an activity. Condition them further with exercise, and then cool down.
- People who spend hours working with a computer, or sitting in front of the T.V. are prone to developing middle back pain. The spine needs to move in order to support a healthy back.
- Aches and pains in the middle of the back is also highly likely to arise if you stress old back injuries that have not yet fully healed or have not healed properly.
OF COURSE WE RECOMMEND – You visit a chiropractor for an exam, diagnosis and treatment. Treatment includes re-alignment of the spinal joints and various therapies that speed healing and reduce inflammation. An important part of treatment is to try to identify the cause of your injury so it can be avoided in the future.
It is important to abide by your Chiropractor’s recommendations, and treat the pain promptly. Neglecting mid back ache can absolutely result in significant and long-lasting issues including nerve damage and degenerative joint disease.
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