What are the causes of lower back pain above the buttocks?

Lower back pain is one of the most common ailments affecting patients in the western world. The causes of lower back pain can vary and usually are indicative of lifestyle, posture, and activity level. Pain in the lumbar region, although common, is a frequent cause of missed work and hospital visits. While most back pain resolves itself at some point, those who suffer with chronic lower back pain or pain that is sharp and urgent may begin to suspect an underlying cause. If you are suffering from lower back pain above the buttocks, here are some of the most frequent causes of the condition.

Fall or Injury

According to medical experts, falling and injuring the back is one of the most common causes of lower back pain in the United States and Canada. Because lower back pain often occurs days after the actual injury, many people do not associate back pain with the injury that caused it. The lumbar region is, however, optimally placed to cause pain after a fall.

Severe Muscle Strain

Muscle strain is also a leading cause of lower back pain. Muscle strain can come as a result of a number of physical activities. If the muscles in the glutes or the lower back region are strained, severe pain in the lumbar region can result.

Work That Requires Lots of Physical Activity

Many people injure their backs while working physically demanding jobs such as construction, sports, or even medical practice. Working highly physical jobs can be helpful with managing weight and maintaining cardiovascular health, but can damage lumbar muscles temporarily.

Daily Usage of Large Backpacks or Purses

Another culprit of lower back pain above the buttocks is the consistent carrying of large storage items like backpacks, purses, laptop bags and the like. This culprit is often overlooked. While people who work physically demanding jobs understand that they are frequently moving heavy objects, students and teachers tend to forget that the frequent storage of large books on their person can be damaging to lumbar health.

Workout Methods

Working out is extremely beneficial to the human body, but it can come with its share of drawbacks. Muscles are often pulled and stressed from workouts being done improperly or without proper preparation. The back muscles can often be damaged from lifting weights with an improper form or from the stress of the body during cardiovascular exercise.

Poor Posture

Poor posture can lead to lower back pain over time and cause lasting damage. Muscle damage from poor posture can be corrected through back strengthening treatments and correcting the poor posture.

Disc Problems

Herniated disc are caused when a disc in the lower back tears and the materials in the disc leak out. The herniated disc can begin to press into the spinal nerves, causing moderate to severe lower back pain. Herniated discs are very common in elderly patients.
Lower back discs can also be damaged by degenerative diseases. With this condition, the spinal bones begin to rub together after discs become weak and tear down.

Medical Conditions

Several medical conditions can cause lower back pain. Conditions like Spinal Stenosis, Spondylitis, and Fibromyalgia are all spine related degenerative diseases or conditions that cause frequent lower back pain. These conditions can cause pain severe enough to require hospitalization.


Obesity is a sneaky culprit of lower back pain above the buttocks. Because most of the muscles and bones in the body are adversely affected by carrying an excessive amount of body fat, lower back pain is a common complaint in obese patients. While rest and muscle therapy in the hospital can help to ease the lower back pain associated with obesity, the only real cure for the condition is to lose the weight. As long as the spine and lumbar muscles are supporting too much weight, pain will be chronic.

Treatments and Help

While a host of conditions can cause lower back pain, the solutions are typically the same. Lower back pain can be treated with pain medication prescribed by a physician, massage therapy, chiropractor therapy, heat therapy, acupuncture and a host of other treatments. A benefit of the condition being so common is that there are many, many, treatments available for it. Conditions like herniated disc or spinal stenosis do require medical attention and should not be treated without the help of a physician. In general, it is a good idea to visit a hospital to have back pain checked out. Ready to finally get help treating your lower back pain? Call us today at 205-637-1363 for support!

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