What is Your Back Muscle Spasm Trying to Tell You?

A back spasm is one of the most common complaints that doctors witness. The most prominent causes of a back muscle spasm are joint misalignment, muscle/bone/tissue injury, and nerve injury. Several approaches can be used to treat back pain, such as medication, lifestyle changes, and therapies.

When you have back spasms, it indicates a problem with your back, and you need a medical diagnosis. When left untreated, muscle spasms can cause chronic back pain, weakness, and swelling in the back.

Read on to discover more about back muscle spasm, their causes, and how it is treated.

What is a Back Muscle Spasms?

Back spasms, also known as cramps, happen when there is an involuntary contraction of muscles in the back. When you have this condition, you experience pain, making it difficult to move and relax muscles. Some come and go periodically, while others are intense, causing back pains.

Note that back cramps are different from other types of pain as they make your muscles feel hard to touch. In addition, you can feel muscle twitching and debilitating pain. Different back cramps affect different spine sections, such as the lumbar, thoracic, and cervical regions. Common symptoms of back cramps include:

  • Pain that leads to a burning or stabbing feeling in the back
  • Stiffness, especially after sleep or rest
  • Tingling feeling in the back
  • Pain may spread to other body parts such as hips, legs, or buttocks
  • Pain when bending or lifting

Causes of Back Muscle Spasm

There are numerous causes of back spasms, and visiting a doctor can help establish the root cause of the problem.

Muscle Fatigue

This is a major cause of back spasms and happens when you engage in tedious activities, particularly for a long duration. Heavy lifting also causes muscle fatigue as it puts strain on your muscles, causing fatigue.

Joint Misalignment

Spinal alignment is one of the most imperative factors of wellbeing. When you have an imbalance in the spinal column, you can have muscle spasms. This results from poor posture or a sedentary lifestyle that puts unnatural stress on your spine.


Injured muscles, bones, and soft tissue, resulting from sprains and strains cause back muscle spasms. This is because the area within the injury causes inflammation in your back, leading to lower back pain and complications with your mobility.

Nerve Injury

Injuries and conditions that lead to nerve damage in the back cause back cramps. Nerve injuries cause inflammation and compression, triggering tingling and pain in the back.

How to Treat Back Muscle Spasms

The approach used in relieving muscle cramps depends on the injury that led to the condition. Some back pain may come and go on their own, while others may require a doctor’s intervention due to chronic pain. If the pain is mild, you can follow the following tips:

  • Applying heat or cold such as a cloth on the affected area
  • Gentle massage
  • Take more fluids to mitigate dehydration
  • Electric stimulation
  • Taking anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Ultrasound

But if the condition lasts long, occurs frequently, and leads to muscle weakness, visit a doctor for an intensive medical checkup. Moreover, keeping your spine healthy is always best to prevent muscle cramps. This can be achieved by lifestyle changes such as maintaining good posture, avoiding tedious lifting and exercises, stretching, and yoga.

Bottom Line

Back muscle spasm is a condition that affects most people worldwide. It is caused by numerous day-to-day activities such as poor posture, heavy lifting, and injuries. You can use numerous approaches, and the appropriate treatment depends on the cause of the cramps. When you experience back cramps, it is best to visit a doctor before it develops into a chronic condition.

Cawley Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation is committed to giving personalized physical therapy services for conditions such as back pain, neck pain, shoulder, knee, foot, and ankle disorders. With about two decades of service, you will get the best medical attention you need in a wide array of conditions. You can contact us to get the treatment and recovery you need to reinstate your normal life.