Coughing regularly due to smoking or illness can cause back pain. When you cough, air is being rushed out of your lungs at an incredibly fast rate. The main muscles used when coughing are in the throat, but your body still requires the assistance of other muscles to generate enough pressure to push out the air. These muscles are called accessory respiratory muscles, as they are not directly involved with the respiratory system. The main accessory muscles are in the back and abdomen. In order for your lungs to push out enough air at a fast rate, the muscles in your back and abdomen compress to create enough pressure. Excessive coughing means excessive compression of the back muscles, which can cause strain and even damage. In addition, coughing can increase pressure in the vertebral discs, which can cause the discs to bulge or even herniate.
In a similar sense, excessive coughing can worsen previous back injuries. The constant contracting of the muscles can make a back injury worse, especially if the injury is to the muscle directly. For example, strained muscles can become more strained, and torn muscles can tear more, as they are not given enough time to heal. The consistent pressure from coughing creates tiny micro-tears in the muscle tissue making each cough a sprinkle of salt to a wound. The muscle re tears before it can fully heal. The back muscles in the lower back are connected to nerve endings, which are also affected from the pressure of a cough. This can make pain linger, so that your back is in pain even when you aren’t coughing.
The best way to avoid this type of pain is to try pinpoint the cause of the constant coughing. If it’s due to smoking, you might want to consider cutting the habit, as back strain and discomfort simply isn’t worth it. If you are ill, try an all-natural throat soother and cough suppressant. Sucking on a teaspoon of honey has been known to soothe a sore throat and help to reduce coughing. This should also help with back pain associated with colds and other illness.
Keep in mind however that severe back pain and coughing could mean something else altogether. You may be developing a more serious medical issue like bronchitis. If your back pain doesn’t subside long after the coughing has, be sure to call our office to discover what the issue may be so that you can remedy it and venture back onto your path towards a healthy and happy life style.