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Cures, Consequences & Causes of Upper Back Pain

The Thoracic Spine consists of 12 bones starting from the neck to the bottom of the Rib Cage, this area is commonly referred to as Upper Back. Any type of pain or inconvenience caused in this area is considered as Upper back pain. 

There are various reasons that can cause an issue in your upper back or neck area, Since your spine is the neuro house of your body, you need to be very careful while treating it at home or engaging in self-healing exercises. Many people suffer from upper back pain in daily lives but are unaware of the causes of Upper back pain, how to cure it, and what could be the possible consequences. 

Here are a few questions that are commonly asked by people who suffer from Upper Back pain or need to know what are the cures and causes of upper back pain. 

Cures and causes of upper back pain Q&A


Q. When should I worry about Upper Back Pain?

Ans: Causes of Upper Back pain affects everyone differently as there are various reasons for its cause, which is why it is extremely important to examine the problem before treating it on your own. If the pain is chronic and becomes uncomfortable, immediately seek medical assistance.  These are the muscles of Upper Back where the pains are caused due to daily activities and can be cured at home: 

  1. Trapezius: This muscle is situated near the shoulder blade. Function of this muscle is to help the body stand straight and  Near your shoulder blade, helps you stand straight, throw and exercise. 
  2. Cause of pain: Trapezius muscle pain usually occurs due to excessive exercise, or inactivity of the muscle. It may also be caused because of prolonged bad body posture. 
  3. Latissimus dorsi: This is the largest muscle in the Upper human body which helps with arm movement, breathing, pulling and pushing.
    Cause of pain: The reason why this muscle can feel strained and stiff could be because of sitting in one position for a long time and bad posture. This muscle pain can also be caused because of heavy work-out without warming up. 
  4. Rhomboids: Adjacent to trapezius this muscle supports the shoulders and helps you pull. Also acts like a support muscle for the upper limbs.
    Cause of pain: Muscle spasm in Rhomboids can be caused due to overuse of arms and shoulders like playing a sport; Tennis, Basketball etc. It can also be caused when reaching high heights with a jerk.


Q. What is the fastest home remedy for back pain?

Ans: To relieve the pain at home you need to fist know what is causing the pain. The reasons for Upper back pain could be various; it may be because of muscle spasm/straining of muscles or it could be because of an internal injury. If you can identify the pain caused in the body, try the below given remedies that might come in handy:

  • Stretch and Exercise: Sore muscles can be a reason for inactiveness of the body and muscle movement. Try and stretch once a while whenever you get up after a long time of sitting or lying down. This releases the tension in the over rested muscles and helps relax. 
  • Pain relief ointments: Sometimes when involved in physical activity, you may pull a muscle that causes instant unbearable pain, in that case try a pain relief spray or ointment and massage for a few minutes until the pain subsides. 
  • Correct posture: Hunching back is one of the most common reasons for upper back pain. Whenever you’re sitting, correct yourself to sit straight or take a sturdy back or neck support, this will eventually help in relieving chronic back pains.
  • Heat and cold treatment: One of the most common home-remedy for muscle pains is treating the affected area with either an Ice-pack and hot-pads. This helps in soothing the muscle that has been strained and gives instant relief. 


Q. Can stress cause Upper Back pain? 

Ans: In a word, YES! With the lots of causes of Upper back pain and neck pain can be caused due to emotional and mental stress. Emotions like sadness, grief, anxiety can cause a pinching sensation in your Upper Back areas. This also happens in cases of paranoia and shock, since back and neck are neuro-mascular sections, the mechanics work closely to the affected area.
If you’re finding yourself in pain and facing causes of upper back pain due to stress and it’s becoming uncomfortable to deal with, consult a doctor at once. You may also try below mentioned tips to release stress related pains. 

  • Meditating and Stretching: Stress and mental deterioration can cause several physical health issues which is why relaxing the mind and muscles both is equally important. Try meditating and stretching after in the morning as a part of your daily exercise, this will help calm your mind and muscles and you will feel refreshed for the entire day. 
  • Take a break: Daily hustle seems great until it starts affecting your health. Make sure to get up from your chair once a while and take a walk. Sitting for long hours makes your muscles feel sore and sometimes causes pain. 
  • Eat Healthy: Include nutritional foods in your meals according to the needs of your body. Frutis, vegetables, protein based food and constant hydration are the key to a balanced diet.

Read MoreAlso know Everything about Lower Back Pain


Q. How do I know if my upper back pain is serious? 

Ans: In normal cases of muscle pull or external injury in the upper back, you would not need to go to the doctor, but if in cases like mentioned below happens with you or someone around you, instantly seek medical help. 

  1. If it hurts while you breathe or if there’s a pinching back pain when deep breathing, immediately see a doctor. This could be due to pulmonary embolism which can cause wedging in blood cells. 
  2. In case you have had a severe injury in the past, and it starts hurting around the same area the more you move, stop instantly and reach out to a doctor/ physician. This may be due to unhealed internal injuries and required precautions should be taken for the same. 
  3. If your causes of upper back pain is coming along with shortness of breath, fatigue, and nausea, rush to the doctor as soon as possible. These could be the early symptoms of a heart attack and must not be ignored even once.


Q. How do you loosen tight upper back muscles?

Ans:  Sore upper back muscles can cause uncomforted on a daily basis, try these easy and equipment-less exercises that will instantly loosen up the muscles around your neck and Upper back. 

  • Rotate your neck clockwise and anticlockwise for 5 times each and then bend your neck on each side i.e Left, right, up and down for 5 seconds. This will help release the tension in neck muscles and upper back. 
  • Over-head stretch is also one of the easiest ways to relieve your sore muscles in the back. Hold your arm with another hand over your head and bend sideways, you may feel stress on the sides of your neck as well as in the back. 
  • Sit on all fours, with your knees touching the floor, and arch your back and then arch it out. Repeat this in sets of fives while resting the back in neutral position for 5 seconds in the between.


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