Upper Back Spasms: Causes and Home Remedies

By , Category : General Health

Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed*** and may vary from person to person***.

Upper Back SpasmsIf you’ve ever faced an injury or other physical restriction to your back, you know how greatly it can affect your life. Your back serves as a bit of a focal point for the rest of your body. Back pain can make it hard to move, hard to relax comfortably…hard to do a whole lot of things. Upper back spasms are a prime example of this discomfort. Not only could they make your back hurt in general, but they can also affect your ability to walk, sit, or lie down. You may find any movement a challenge with upper back spasms. So, how do you deal with upper back spasms? What are the causes of upper back spasms, and what are upper back spasms treatments? Here, we are going to look at upper back spasms and pain and the best ways to treat these issues.

The Causes of Upper Back Spasms

Muscle spasms in the upper back can be caused by any number of things: injury, awkward movement, or certain physical conditions. None of these causes are particularly pleasant. But with that in mind, there are some causes a little more common than others; and there are some other causes of upper back muscle spasms that you should be aware of. The following causes of upper back spasms are things you should be on the lookout for.

1. Trauma/Injury

Injury to the spine or muscles of the upper back can cause upper back spasms. If the injury is severe enough, those spasms can constantly reappear or may even become permanent.

2. Infections

Infections like a paraspinal abscess or a spinal epidural abscess can compress the spinal cord or spinal nerves in the thoracic spine, causing upper back spasms, pain, and other issues.

3. Poor Posture

Sitting improperly for long periods can cause upper back spasms. If you are consistently hunched over a desk or a laptop, it can cause your shoulders to bring more stress on your upper back muscles.

4. Improper Lifting

When lifting a weight, especially when it’s a heavier weight, positioning is very important. Lifting the weight improperly can cause muscle tears and strains that can cause upper back muscle spasms.

5. Joint Dysfunction

Areas where the ribs connect to the spine can develop issues due to injury or improper movement of the related joints. This injury or dysfunction can often lead to upper back spasms.

6. Herniated Disc

A herniated disc in the upper back can lead to upper back spasms and upper back pain. This is a rare cause, but it can occur.

7. Osteoporosis

A condition that weakens your bones and your lowers your bone mass, osteoporosis (which can be caused by numerous causes) can cause spinal damage that can lead to upper back muscle spasms.

8. Degenerated Discs

There are a number of conditions and diseases that can cause a disc in the spine to degenerate.  That degeneration can cause upper back muscle spasms and pain. Again, this particular cause is not incredibly common.

9. Kyphosis or a Kyphotic Curve

A kyphotic curve is in the spine in the thoracic spine that can be caused by a number of factors like osteoporosis. This curve can often cause issues with the upper back including pain and spasms.

As you can see from the above list of upper back muscle spasms, the causes are quite expansive but luckily for a great number of these causes, there are treatments available.

Home Remedies for Muscle Spasms in the Upper Back

You’ve been experiencing those upper back spasms, and you’d like very much to get rid of them. What can you do in terms of treatment for those muscle spasms? In some cases, you will have to consult a doctor and you may be forced to have surgery. But for the simpler causes, there may be a number of home remedies that can help stop the spasms and allow you to get back to your life.

1. Massage

You may be lucky enough that your issues with upper back muscle spasms can be easily fixed by massage. This can run from just a simple shoulder massage, to a full back massage. The massage may help loosen muscles that are currently spasm.

2. Heat Therapy

Warming the upper back muscles can help blood circulation and relax the muscles. This relaxation may help stop some of your upper back muscle spasms. Heating pads and the like can be of a great help.

3. Cold Therapy

Cold therapy can help out back spasms in a much different way than heat therapy, as it can help cool the muscles, especially if they are injured, and help them heal. The muscles heal, and the back spasms may stop.

4. Warm Baths

This seemingly goes hand in hand with heat therapy, but warm baths or showers can also get the blood flowing in the back and loosen up the muscles.

5. Improve Your Posture

This can be easier said than done. Your posture may be dictated by years of habits. That being said, correcting your posture can lead to great benefits for your body, especially your back.

6. Stretches and Exercises

In a case of prevention, there are a number of upper back pain exercises and stretches that you can do to loosen up your muscles and make them a little more flexible. Stretching before exercising the back can prevent the injuries that create the upper back spasms. Exercising the upper back can help strengthen the back muscles, also preventing injury.

There are some other natural methods that you may have to go outside of the home for. A visit to the chiropractor for spinal adjustment could help, as could acupuncture. Spinal traction may also help the spine issues that are causing you upper back spasms.


muscle spasm in upper back

Upper Back Spasms: Don’t Let Them Rule Your Life!

Upper back spasms are quite uncomfortable. The back is such a huge part of the body, physically and in terms of movement. You use your back for walking, sitting, and lying down. When using your arms to lift or move anything, you are also engaging the muscles in your back. Luckily, for many of the causes of upper back spasms, they can be dealt with naturally at home. That being said, if you are unsure of the extent of your back spasm problems, go see a doctor to get checked out.


Related Article:

Understanding Causes of Lower Back Pain

Lower Back Pain on the Left Side

Top 10 Homeopathic Remedies for Low Back Pain



Sources:
Sellers, T., J., “Causes of Upper Back Pain,” Spine Health, April 17, 2002; http://www.spine-health.com/conditions/upper-back-pain/causes-upper-back-pain,  last accessed May 1, 2017.
Eidelson, G., S., “Causes of Upper Back Pain,” Spine Universe; https://www.spineuniverse.com/conditions/back-pain/upper-back-pain/causes-upper-back-pain,  last accessed May 1, 2017.
Mackey, R., “Treatment of Upper Back Spasms,”Back Spasm Advice, August 13, 2012; http://backspasmadvice.com/treatment-of-upper-back-spasms/,  last accessed May 1, 2017.
“Upper Back Muscle Spasms: Causes And Treatment For Back Muscle Pain,” Simple Remedies, January 19, 2011; http://www.simple-remedies.com/health-tips-2/upper-back-muscle-spasms.html,  last accessed May 1, 2017.
“Upper Back Pain,” Choose Natural;  http://www.choosenatural.com/back-pain/upper-back-pain/, last accessed May 1, 2017.




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Up until the end of 2016, Brent Chittenden had been a freelance researcher and writer, writing about everything from entertainment—including pro wrestling and stand-up comedy—to health and nutrition, to culture and lifestyle. In 2017, he joined the Doctors Health Press full time and couldn’t be happier about it. With a graduate certificate in Radio and Broadcasting, Brent brings extensive experience as a communicator and researcher, adding to the many talented health authorities and professionals on whose expertise Doctors Health Press... Read Full Bio »