If you have incontinence, you may also experience lower back pain. Researchers have uncovered a link between the two conditions, particularly for women experiencing incontinence. Treating one of these conditions usually has an impact on the other. Learn about the relationship between pain in the back muscles and incontinence, so that you can seek effective treatment.
Back Problems and Incontinence
Over 70 percent of people will experience pain and discomfort in the back at some point in their lives. Causes of pain in the upper and lower back range from poor posture, to blunt trauma. Obesity also leads to a greater chance of experiencing this type of pain. Since many Americans now spend most of their day sitting in a chair at their desk, they can develop poor posture, which impacts pelvic floor function. Standing desks, or greater physical activity during the day can improve posture.
Untreated, this pain can lower the performance and stamina of the pelvic floor. This has a direct relationship to incontinence, as pelvic floor muscles provide direct support to the bladder and female reproductive system.
There are many different treatment methods for muscular back discomfort and pain. These range from physical therapy and strength training programs, to chiropractic care and sports massage. If you experience back muscle pain, a doctor can diagnose the underlying condition, and provide a comprehensive treatment plan that reduces the risk factors of developing or experiencing more severe incontinence.
How This Affects Women
Women are particularly prone to experiencing this pain if they suffer from a pelvic floor condition, such as incontinence, constipation, or difficulty fully emptying the bladder. Women with one of these conditions usually have weak pelvic muscles, and correlating weak core muscles. This leaves the back muscles without the proper muscular support that they need, leading to pain.
Women are particularly susceptible to these issues after childbirth, and after age 60. Other risk factors include menopause and hysterectomy.
While the combination of these two problems typically affects women, men are not immune from experiencing pain in the back together with incontinence. This is an important issue that can affect all sufferers, from pelvic floor disorders, and is often not talked about because of shame surrounding incontinence issues.
Treatment Options for Pelvic Floor Problems
Too many people think that their incontinence and related pain is just something to put up with. In reality, these conditions are treatable, and can be managed to improve quality of life. There are medications that can alleviate incontinence symptoms and muscular pain.
Many patients find that physical therapy to strengthen the pelvic floor reduces the level of pain and the frequency of urination. In the event that neither medication nor physical therapy helps, there are surgical treatment options. Additionally, developing good lifestyle habits can help to minimize the pain felt in the back region. These healthy habits include regular exercise, eating a balanced and healthy diet, getting to a healthy body weight, and maintaining good posture throughout the day.
If you are experiencing urinary incontinence and underlying back region pain, speak with your doctor about treatment options. You don’t have to bear this burden in silence.