Anyone could be taken off guard by a strong sneeze. While most individuals don’t have a problem with it, for other people, sneezing can cause excruciating lower back discomfort.

What is going on when you sneeze and have back pain? Do you need to be concerned about this? We’ll examine the root causes of this excruciating problem and possible solutions.



Numerous conditions, ranging from a straightforward muscular strain to a ruptured disc, might result in this discomfort.

If your symptoms don’t get better or get worse after a couple of weeks, you should contact a doctor.

Due to the way the body “processes” sneezes, violent sneezes can leave you in excruciating pain.

Sneezes can move at speeds of up to 100 mph.


When you sneeze, what happens?

Sneezing is a strong, automatic reflex motion that helps to rid your nose of any irritants, including pollen, dust, and smoke. Due to the way the body “processes” sneezes, violent sneezes can leave you in excruciating pain. The pressure inside your abdomen and spinal canal rises as you begin to sneeze. Your body releases all that pressure with a lot of force when you finish your sneeze.

Sneezes can move at speeds of up to 100 mph. If you have underlying medical conditions, you can see how sneezing could hurt.


When you sneeze, what might be causing lower back pain?

If you have any of the following conditions, you can understand how painful that strong ejection will be given all the pressure shifts in your body during a sneeze.

Disc herniation and sciatica

The sciatic nerve, which extends from the lower back to the foot, can get compressed or injured, resulting in sciatica.

The longest and widest nerve in your body is the sciatic nerve. It descends through your pelvis, and branches, and continues down each leg from your lower spine.  Sciatica is the medical term for sciatic nerve damage.  In addition to back discomfort, it frequently causes leg pain. This robust but flimsy nerve can be compressed by quick 
sneeze, which can result in shooting sensations and numbness down one or both legs.

Pain that is either mild or intense, a burning sensation, numbness, tingling, or weakness are among the symptoms. These often have an impact on one side of the lower body or the lower back. You may have a herniated disc and need medical care if your sciatica symptoms get worse when you sneeze.

Compression fracture of the vertebrae (VCF)

Osteoporosis, a disorder that weakens bones, makes people more susceptible to VCF, which occurs when a portion of your vertebra collapses.  For those who have severe

When portion of your vertebra collapses, this is known as vertebral compression fracture (VCF).  It is the most frequent fracture in persons with osteoporosis, disorder that causes the bones to deteriorate, according to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons. 
VCF can be brought on by sneeze or even just few stairs for those who have severe osteoporosis. Typically, fall or other sort of trauma is required to trigger this type of vertebral fracture in patients with mild or severe osteoporosis. In osteoporosis, a single sneeze could result in a spinal compression fracture.


Although there are many different types of arthritis, osteoarthritis is the most prevalent. One of the joints most severely impacted by the illness is the spine. Pain and odd feelings result from bone rubbing against bone and cartilage wearing down. Your vertebra won’t have much cushioning if you have osteoarthritis, so when you sneeze there is no shock absorption. It can cause a great deal of agony.

Strained muscle

Overexertion, lifting, or twisting are common causes of pulled muscles (also known as muscular strains). Your muscle fibers will stretch or tear, which will identify them. It will pain when you bend, twist, or use the affected muscles. After a few days, tensions usually go away on their own. It’s worth contacting a doctor if, after a week or two, the pain from a strained muscle is still there.

A strong sneeze can pull a muscle in your back,  and sneezing can make any pulled muscles worse by causing spasms.  To prevent aggravating an already-existing strain or creating a new one, try our safety advice.


How to avoid back discomfort when sneezing

Don’t slouch

When you sneeze, resist the urge to hunch forward naturally. Sneezes have a lot of force, and the more forceful ones can seriously strain your back. The majority of people also turn their heads away from other people in a room when they sneeze, which is considered courteous but is bad for your neck. You can lessen the compression on your vertebrae by maintaining your upright posture and gazing forward.

To support yourself and the natural curvature of your spine, you can also support yourself by resting both hands on a surface. By doing this, you avoid merely stressing your back and instead disperse the pressure from the sneeze more evenly throughout your body.

When you sneeze, rising up, leaning forward, and laying your hands on a table, counter, or other firm surfaces may provide you with even greater benefits, claims a 2014 study. Your spine and back muscles may feel less strain as a result.


How might sneezing-related lower back discomfort be treated?

Reducing intense activities is a good option if you pulled your back while sneezing. You should still carry out your everyday tasks, though, and a leisurely walk or swim can be beneficial. Spending too much time lying down can make you stiffer and more in discomfort.

Anti-inflammatory medicines can be taken to reduce pain, and light stretching may also be beneficial. The following are other things that help ease discomfort,

Therapy with cold, heat, or TENS

These treatments work wonders to relieve muscular pain. One of these remedies is an excellent idea if you’ve pulled your back with a painful sneeze.

Cold treatment

reduces swelling and pain signals by constricting the muscles and narrowing the blood vessels. Apply as necessary for 15 to 20 minutes. Avoid if you have muscle cramps or knots since the cold can make them worse.

Heat treatment

Great for aches, pains, and cramps since it widens blood vessels. Do it three times every day for up to 20 minutes. In the first 72 hours after an injury, avoid it because heat can make inflammation worse.

TENS treatment

A low-voltage electrical current is used in Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) to relax the muscles and relieve back discomfort. Provide momentary pain alleviation. Though there is little scientific proof, it appears to work for some people. Before using TENS, see your doctor.

Back support

Back braces provide additional support for your spine, lessen strain, and encourage proper posture. The additional defense against those forceful sneezes might be a smart move if you’re older, have a history of back discomfort, osteoporosis, or frequently experience back pain while sneezing.

In order to prevent you from becoming reliant on a brace, your doctor will be able to prescribe a brace regimen in addition to a program to increase your core strength. They’re an excellent tool for preventing re-injury, but to prevent muscle atrophy, you should only use them as directed by a medical professional.


When should you visit your doctor if sneezing causes lower back pain?

If your symptoms don’t get better or get worse after a couple of weeks, you should contact a doctor. It’s important to make an appointment with your doctor for a checkup if you frequently have back pain while sneezing.

If you experience lower back pain and any of these, get immediate medical attention:

  • a lack of bladder or bowel control
  • loss of feeling in your legs, hips, groin, or lower back
  • back ache that extends past the knee and down your leg
  • history of cancer diagnosis

Other unexpected symptoms, such as stomach ache or a fever


In conclusion

It can be concerning if your lower back hurts when you sneeze. Numerous conditions, ranging from a straightforward muscular strain to a ruptured disc, might result in this discomfort.

If you’re in pain after a strong sneeze, there are things you may do at home to relieve the discomfort. Gentle exercise, heat or cold therapy, and anti-inflammatory medicines are all effective strategies to return to feeling normal.

However, it’s crucial to contact a doctor if your discomfort persists for more than a few weeks or if there are other concomitant symptoms so that any underlying problems may be treated right away.


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