A muscle spasm is when skeletal muscles contracts involuntarily and does not relax. This may be acute (ie a short cramp for a few seconds to a few hours) or chronic (lasts weeks/months).
If you think you may be experiencing muscle spasms in your lower back, here are 7 symptoms that may occur:
- Sudden pain in lower back (ranging from mild twitch or discomfort to intense pain)
- Difficulty with movements such as bending forwards, backwards or twisting
- Pain in lower back when lifting objects
- General tightness and lack of flexibility in low back
- Pain radiating into glutes and hips
- Pain in low back during prolonged sitting or standing
- Difficulty maintaining correct postureMost of the time this pain will be muscular and can be described as generally dull and achy, but may also be sharp and specific to a certain area of your back. It may be triggered by certain movements and refer sharp shooting pains to other areas of your body. Sharp shooting pain may be a symptom of nerve related pain, however, provided the pain does not feel electrical, tingly or spark like, it is most like muscular. If you are experiencing this kind of pain, talk to your doctor to further assess what may be causing it.
How to get relief:
Lower back muscle spasms can be painful and may stop you from participating in activities you enjoy, but also ones you need to do. The good news is that there are ways to get relief.
See a Soft Tissue Occupational Therapist:
Soft Tissue Occupational Therapists specialize with treating muscular pain. They use a manual, hands on approach to relieve muscle spasm and promote muscle relaxation and healing. A soft tissue occupational therapist will also work with you to identify other areas in your life which may be impacting your pain.
Applying heat in the form of a heat pad or warm bath can also help to reduce tightness and pain in your lower back. Topical treatments such as tiger balm and eagle balm are also useful to heat the muscles and reduce pain.