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Lesser-Known Causes of Back Pain

Lesser-Known Causes of Back Pain

Back pain is a common complaint among adults, affecting up to 80% of individuals at some point in their lives. 

It’s easy to associate causes of back pain with poor posture, lifting heavy objects, or straining muscles while exercising. However, at Regenerative Spine and Pain Institute, we also understand the lesser-known causes. Ronak D. Patel, MD, and our team explain some of them here.

Causes of back pain that may surprise you

One reason for back pain can be linked to certain areas of your health.

Medical conditions

Back pain can be a symptom of underlying medical conditions that affect the spine, such as scoliosis or spinal stenosis. These conditions may cause the following:


This is back pain that originates in the lower back but radiates down the leg. It is caused by the compression of the sciatic nerve, which runs from the lower back to the feet.

Herniated disc

herniated disc occurs when the disc between the vertebrae ruptures, causing the inner core to protrude and put pressure on the nerves that run through the spine. This can cause severe back pain, numbness, and tingling.


This is a chronic inflammation of the joints that causes pain, swelling, and stiffness. It can affect the joints in the spine and cause back pain.


This is a condition that causes the bones to become brittle and weak, increasing the risk of fractures. Vertebral fractures caused by osteoporosis can cause severe back pain.

Kidney stones

These are hard deposits of minerals and salts that form in the kidneys and may cause severe back pain as they pass through the ureters.

Our team can provide a thorough examination to determine the root cause of your back pain.

Lifestyle factors

Sometimes, back pain can be caused by lifestyle factors that might include the following:


If you don't drink enough water, your spinal discs can become dehydrated and lose their cushioning ability, leading to back pain.

Lack of exercise

When you don't engage in regular physical activity, your muscles and joints can become weak, increasing the risk of back pain.

Poor sleeping habits

If you sleep on a mattress that doesn't offer enough support, or you sleep on your stomach, you may experience back pain.

Emotional stress

Stress can cause muscle tension, which can lead to back pain.


Smoking reduces the blood flow to the spine, which can cause the discs to degenerate and cause back pain.

If you struggle with poor habits and want to make improvements to your daily routine and lifestyle, we can offer guidance.

Workplace conditions

The following workplace conditions can also contribute to back pain:

Prolonged sitting

If you sit for long hours, your posture can become poor, which can strain your muscles and lead to back pain.

Lifting heavy objects

If you have to lift heavy objects regularly, you may be at risk of back pain, especially if you don't lift properly or use appropriate equipment.

Repetitive movements

If your job involves repetitive motions that strain your back, you may be at risk of back pain.

Vibration exposure

If you work with machinery that produces vibrations, you may develop back pain over time.

You can reduce your risk of back pain when you stay aware of your posture, be careful with your movements on the job, and learn how to operate equipment properly.

Next steps

If you experience back pain for any reason, come in and see us at Regenerative Spine and Pain Institute. We can determine the underlying cause and personalize a treatment plan for you that might include options such as regenerative medicine, nerve blocks, injections, or spinal cord stimulation.

By identifying the lesser-known causes of back pain, we can help you prevent it and maintain a healthy spine. To book an appointment, reach out to the office nearest you in Plainsboro or Manalapan Township, New Jersey, today.

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