Most people know the feeling of a pit in their stomach before a big presentation or due date. The sweaty palms you get before a first date, or the weird rash you get every time you go to your in-laws house can be signs of stress. It is no secret that stress can have physical effects on our body. Stress could also cause pain in your lower back.
Our body’s are equipped to handle small doses of stress; however, when that stress is more chronic we start to feel the effects of it on our body. Stress causes the muscles in our body to tense up as a defense mechanism to protect ourselves. When our bodies are in a constant state of stress our muscles will likely be in a constant state of contraction. Constant contraction of the muscles commonly causes people to have pain in their lower back, neck, and shoulders.
Since stress is linked to a lack of energy, movement may be limited thus weakening the muscles and increasing pain. Prolonged tension in the neck and shoulders can trigger headaches and migraines. All of that tension and the nervous clenching of the jaw some people experience can even contribute to TMJ. Unfortunately, these chronic pains can add to the stress that is initially causing the pain and the cycle continues.
To reduce pain it is important to consider stress and Physical pain can be our body’s way of telling us that there is work that needs to be done emotionally. Try pin-pointing the major stressors in your life and consider new methods of coping with them. Try meditation or talk-therapy as potential treatment options.