The NeuroMedical Center | Patient Education Library | Coccydynia

What is Coccydynia?

Coccydynia, more commonly referred to as ‘tailbone pain,’ is an inflammation of the tip of the tailbone, called the coccyx.   You get coccydynia when your coccyx (tailbone), or the surrounding tissue, is damaged. This causes pain and discomfort at the base of your spine, particularly when sitting down.

What Causes Coccydynia?

The coccyx can be damaged in a number of ways, although in many cases it’s not possible to identify a cause.  The main causes include:

  • Sitting for extended periods
  • The overstretching of muscles and ligaments during childbirth
  • Trauma to the base of your spine such as a hard fall
  • Poor posture while at work or while driving long distances
  • Being overweight or underweight

What Are common Coccydynia Symptoms?

The classic symptom of coccydynia is pain when pressure is applied to the tailbone, such as when sitting on a hard chair.  Other symptoms can include:

  • Immediate and severe pain when moving from the sitting to standing position
  • Pain during bowel movements
  • Pain during sexual intercourse

Coccydynia Self-Care Measures

If you are experiencing tailbone pain, there are things you can do at home to improve your coccydynia symptoms.

  • Avoid sitting for long periods of time — Take frequent breaks by standing up and walking around when possible
  • Wear loose-fitting clothes –Tight pants and jeans may put unnecessary pressure on your tailbone
  • Apply heat or ice to the affected area
  • Purchase a specially-designed coccyx cushion to help reduce pressure on your tailbone while sitting down
  • Take over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol, others), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or aspirin

expert treatment for coccydynia in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

There are many causes of tailbone pain that can mimic coccydynia, including sciatica, infection (including shingles of the buttocks), and tailbone fracture.  If you are experiencing tailbone pain that won’t go away, it is important that you seek out expert evaluation and treatment from a spine specialist at The NeuroMedical Center.  Our physicians can accurately diagnose your spinal condition and offer the right treatment to help reduce your pain.  Call The NeuroMedical Center (225) 768-2050 or request an appointment online to schedule a consultation today.