The Connection Between Back Pain and Bladder Leakage: Understanding the Link

December 14, 2023

If you’ve been wondering if that gnarly back pain that you’ve been dealing with on and off for years, along with sciatic nerve symptoms and disc problems, could be affecting your bladder leakage, you’re in the right place. In this blog post, we’ll explore the intriguing connection between back pain and bladder issues. My name is Brittany Cappiello, and I am a pelvic floor physical therapist with over 21 years of experience helping women just like you. I often hear the question: “I’ve had back pain for a while, I have degenerative disc disease, and I’ve experienced sciatic nerve symptoms. Does that have anything to do with my bladder leaks?” The answer is a resounding yes, and in this post, we’ll dive deeper into why.


One of the fascinating aspects of the human body is how interconnected its various parts are. When we talk about back pain and bladder leakage, we’re actually talking about two sides of the same coin. The key to understanding this connection lies in the pelvic floor muscles, which are responsible for providing support to your pelvic organs, including the bladder. These muscles surround your coccyx (tailbone) and attach directly to the sacrum (the largest lower part of the spine).


Imagine your body as a shirt. If you pull on one part of the shirt, you’ll notice the entire fabric moves and shifts. Similarly, when your pelvic floor is tight or tense, it can pull on the lower part of your tailbone and sacrum, affecting the entire chain of your spine. This tension can lead to altered spinal mechanics and contribute to back pain. In essence, your pelvic floor health is closely tied to the health of your back, and the two can influence each other significantly.


Pain is a powerful factor that influences how we move. When you experience pain, especially in your back, you’re likely to become more cautious and restrict your movements to avoid discomfort. This cautiousness can lead to decreased mobility and less engagement of your pelvic floor muscles, which depend on movement for proper function.


Your pelvic floor muscles are unique in that they have fibers that run in different directions – some with rotation, some side-to-side, and others front-to-back. To maintain pelvic floor health and prevent bladder leakage, these muscles need to move and contract effectively. However, if you’re avoiding movement due to back pain, your pelvic floor can weaken and lose its ability to support your bladder.


It’s essential to understand that not all movement is created equal, especially when you’re dealing with back pain. Engaging in movements that exacerbate your pain can be counterproductive. However, learning how to move in a way that includes your pelvic floor and reduces stress on your spine can be immensely beneficial.


The key is to allow your pelvis to lead the way while your lower back follows naturally. This type of movement reduces stress, inflammation, and irritation to both your spine’s joints and surrounding soft tissues.


In summary, the link between back pain and bladder leakage is more profound than you might have thought. Your pelvic floor health and spinal health are intimately connected and addressing one can have a positive impact on the other. By learning how to move correctly and engaging in exercises tailored to your needs, you can alleviate back pain, strengthen your pelvic floor, and reduce bladder leakage.


If you’re interested in discovering exercises and strategies to improve both your back pain and bladder leakage, I invite you to explore my online program at Together, we can help you regain control of your health and well-being.


Don’t let back pain and bladder leakage hold you back any longer. Take the first step towards a healthier, more comfortable life today.


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