Even minor tailbone injuries can cause major discomfort. Because of this, it can be difficult to know if your injury is serious and requires medical attention.
If You’re Experiencing Tailbone Pain, A Chiropractor Can Help
Tailbone pain, or coccydynia, may present as a throbbing, a sharp, stabbing pain, or a persistent dull ache. It typically worsens when you sit, though your exact triggers may vary based on the type and severity of the injury.
Fortunately, many tailbone injuries are best treated with a few simple home remedies. And if these don’t bring relief, a Pembroke Pines chiropractor can help you reduce your pain and heal more quickly.
Common Tailbone (Coccyx) Injuries
Many tailbone injuries have similar symptoms, so one of the best ways to figure out which type of injury you may be experiencing is to try to trace it back to the root cause. The most common causes of tailbone (or coccyx) pain are:
- Bruises, Dislocations, and Fractures: If you’ve ever fallen backwards and landed in the seated position, you’ve probably experienced the pain of a bruised tailbone. And if your fall is especially severe — such as falling off a ladder or colliding with someone during a contact sport — or you land in just the right position, you may even fracture or dislocate your tailbone.
- Repetitive Strain Injury: If you frequently ride a bike or participate in a sport like rowing, your tailbone pain might indicate that you have a repetitive strain injury. The motion and seated position of biking and rowing places stress on the muscles and ligaments around your tailbone, and over time, this may cause tissue inflammation and pain.
- Pregnancy and Childbirth Related Injuries: When a person is pregnant, the body will naturally soften the area around the tailbone, so that it can move during childbirth. Sometimes, the softening will cause a painful stretching of the muscles and ligaments attached to the tailbone.
- Weight Related Stressors: When you gain excess weight, it places additional pressure on the tailbone. Over time, this can cause the coccyx to move out of position. On the other hand, if you are underweight and don’t have enough fat to cushion your tailbone, it may rub against the surrounding muscles, ligaments, and tendons, which causes inflammation.
How to Sit Comfortably with an Injured Tailbone
The most common, and often most frustrating, symptom of tailbone injuries is pain while sitting. If you work a desk job or have to drive frequently, tailbone pain can be incredibly disruptive.
While you should try to minimize the time you spend sitting if you’re experiencing tailbone pain, there are a few ways to make yourself more comfortable.
First, try sitting on a coccyx cushion or “donut pillow”. This takes pressure off of the tailbone while also cushioning the surrounding bones and muscles. If you don’t have a donut pillow, sitting on a regular small pillow and leaning slightly forward may provide some level of relief. If possible, try to take frequent breaks from sitting and walk around.
How to Minimize Pain After a Tailbone Injury
While tailbone pain can make day-to-day life challenging, the good news is that most coccyx injuries will heal themselves, and you can often find relief with at-home remedies.
Depending on the type of injury, applying ice or heat may help to either reduce swelling or relax sore muscles and tendons.
If you’re having trouble sleeping because of your pain, try sleeping on your side with a pillow between your knees to take as much stress as possible off of coccyx.
What Can a Chiropractor Do for Tailbone Injuries?
If home remedies aren’t providing the pain relief you need, or your injury just doesn’t seem to be getting better over time, a chiropractor can help.
When you visit a chiropractor for a tailbone injury, they will first work with you to understand the cause of your pain, whether by taking x-rays or simply talking with you to understand any relevant lifestyle factors and past injuries.
Based on their diagnosis, they’ll then come up with a treatment plan that can either speed up the healing process, provide pain relief, or often some combination of the two.
Those treatments may include:
- Chiropractic Adjustment: Applying controlled force to the joints can help with a variety of tailbone injuries. If your tailbone is out of place because of dislocation, obesity, or even because you were born that way, chiropractic adjustment can help realign the vertebrae and relieve stress on the surrounding tissues.
- Electrical Muscle Stimulation: At Rush Chiropractic, we use electrical muscle stimulation to help loosen muscles and reduce tissue inflammation. This in turn can cause your tailbone injury to heal more quickly, while also reducing your pain in the meantime.
- Massage Therapy: If you’re dealing with pain from a bruised tailbone, repetitive strain injury, or pain from pregnancy, massage therapy can complement your other treatments and provide temporary pain relief.
- Exercise and Nutritional Advice: Whether you need a few stretches to help strengthen the muscles in your lower back, or you’re hoping to lose weight to help ease your tailbone pain, our team at Rush Chiropractic can provide practical advice about lifestyle changes that may help you find long-term relief.
When Should You Go to the Emergency Room for Tailbone Pain?
While most tailbone injuries will heal with a combination of at-home remedies and chiropractic care, there are some instances when tailbone pain might be a symptom of a spinal cord injury. If you have any of the following symptoms, you should call 911 or go to the emergency room as quickly as possible:
- Loss of bowel or bladder control
- Paralysis in any part of the body
- Severe neck or back pain
- Tingling in your legs
- Weakness in your legs or arms
If you’re experiencing chronic or acute tailbone pain, Rush Chiropractic can help you find relief and prevent future complications. Contact us today at 954-432-5006 to schedule a consultation.
Dr. Rush is a 1994 graduate of the University of Florida where he earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Exercise Sports Science and Wellness.
Dr. Rush earned his Doctor of Chiropractic Degree at Life University in 2000 where he was honored with magna cum laude. Dr. Rush was born and raised in South Florida where he returned after graduation. He currently practices in Pembroke Pines where he owns and operates Rush Chiropractic and Rehab.