woman touching her back

What Causes Upper Back Pain?

The upper back or can be referred to as the thoracic spine, is the area between the neck and low back.

Stiffness, muscle spasms, and pain are common upper back symptoms. For some can feel pain when taking a deep breath, during movement, or when the tender area is touched.

Poor posture, deconditioning, bending or twisting, sitting in a static position for a long time, hard coughing or sneezing, or carrying an overstuffed backpack can lead to upper back pain. Scoliosis, an abnormal curvature of the thoracic spine, sometimes causes upper back pain.

Muscle or Soft Tissue Problem

Muscles, tendons, and ligaments of the soft tissues that support the spine could be sprained or strained by misuse or overuse.

Upper back muscle Sprain or a Strain can be cause through:

  • Poor posture: Sitting with a rounded back, shoulders hunched forward, can put too much stress on the back muscles. Poor posture is one of the leading causes of upper back pain because so many office workers spend their work days at the computer. It’s easy to fall into bad habits of not sitting properly, especially when you’re at your desk for so many hours a day.
  • Improper lifting: When picking something up, you should also use good body mechanics so that you protect your spine. Not using the proper form can cause injury and pain.
  • Carrying a heavy backpack: Kids are obviously more in danger of getting an upper back injury because of a backpack. An overly loaded backpack is dangerous to the spine, but so is not wearing the backpack correctly (eg, just using one strap).
  • Trauma/injury: Traumatic events, such as car accidents, can cause upper back pain for various reasons. It’s possible to fracture a vertebra (spinal bone). Or part of your vertebra(e) can press on a spinal nerve, which can cause pain.
  • Osteoporosis: This is a condition affecting the bones. It weakens them, making them more likely to fracture and less likely to carry your weight well. If you have osteoporosis in your thoracic spine, you may develop upper back pain. Weakened vertebrae don’t support your body’s weight as well, so your muscles, ligaments, and tendons have to work harder to make up for the vertebrae. That can lead to sprain, strain, or muscle fatigue.
  • Kyphosis: When looked at from the side, your spine is supposed to curve outwards in your upper back (thoracic spine) region; that curve is called kyphosis or a kyphotic curve. However, it can start to curve outward too much, and that’s problematic kyphosis. Various conditions, such as osteoporosis, can cause problematic kyphosis in the thoracic spine, leading to upper back pain.
  • Scoliosis: Scoliosis causes an unusual curve or curves in the spine. It can make your spine look like an “S”or a “C” when viewed from the back. If your spine is curving to the left or to the right in the upper back (thoracic spine), you may have pain because of how the curve affects spinal nerves, muscles, and other soft tissues.

Below are some upper back stretches for you:

  • Tuck your chin down.
  • Squeeze your shoulder blades together.
  • Link your arms behind you while squeezing your shoulder blades together.
  • Hold for a count of ten seconds.
  • Repeat several times a day.
During your visit your condition will be assessed and steps taken to assist with your rehabilitation. After the session FREE muscle stretching sheets can be provided to assist with healing your injury. It is recommended that you continue these exercises at home to speed up the healing process. To book in for a session, please call Jade Tran on 0425 444 304. I hope you found the article helpful in further understanding your symptoms. Any opinions expressed within my articles/blog are from my personal perspective, not that of my Professional Associations / Educational Institutions
.Articles are intended to convey information only and should not being misconstrued as medical advice. If you have any concerns regard to medical matter, you need to consult a professional healthcare provider.

 I will not compensate you in any way what so ever should you happen to suffer death/injury/loss/inconvenience/damage due to the information contain in this article.