Some people have experienced falling down which causes pain and discomfort in the coccyx. Coccyx or tailbone is located at the base below the spine. In the coccyx, there are several pelvic floor muscles, tendons, and ligaments.
The function of the coccyx is to support and maintain a person’s stability when in a sitting position. Therefore, do not consider trivial injuries to the coccyx.
When we fall in a sitting position, the tailbone can experience cracks, shifts, or bruises. In addition to falling, a hard impact directly on the coccyx, for example a collision during exercise, can also hurt coccyx.
Pain in the coccyx can last for different periods of time, ranging from just a moment to more than two months. Usually we feel pain when we want to sit, are sitting, standing, or while walking. Pain in the coccyx can be accompanied by other symptoms, such as pain in the buttocks that spread to the thighs and legs, bruising or swelling in the area of the coccyx or lower back, pain when defecating, bending, lifting, or when in contact sex. This injury can also cause symptoms in the form of pain in the lower back or feels like pressure on the waist area.
Home treatments for tailbone injury
- Avoid sitting too long in hard surfaces.
- Use a soft donut pillow to reduce pressure on the coccyx. The hole in the middle of the pillow is useful to avoid the weight of the body resting on the tailbone that is sick.
- Compress the coccyx area using ice for 15-20 minutes. Do this four times a day for a few days after falling down.
- Familiarise yourself with a high-fibre diet to avoid constipation and hard stools. In conditions of hard stools, the coccyx can get more painful when you defecate or when straining.
- Take nonsteroidal pain relievers to allow you to move without pain. However, avoid taking this drug or consult a doctor before taking this medicine if you have kidney disease, are undergoing treatment to thin the blood, or have a history of gastrointestinal bleeding.
Pain in the coccyx can generally be treated with the steps above, but if the pain experienced is severe enough, further medical assistance is needed. Usually a neurological examination or digital rectal examination will be performed. X-ray examinations are also usually important to see if there is a fracture or a dislocated joint.
On digital rectal examination, the doctor will insert a finger into the anus to feel the area of the coccyx is shifting or cracking. If the coccyx is fractured, there is a choice to undergo surgery, although not always. In addition, if after recovery the pain still persists even severe enough to cause paralysis, it may be necessary to remove the coccygectomy.
Actually injury to the coccyx can be caused by many things, not just falling or due to a collision in the coccyx. Other common causes are due to childbirth, pressure due to repetitive movements in the coccyx like when cycling, and sometimes the cause is unknown. Check with a doctor if you experience symptoms of coccyx injury or discomfort in the tailbone area that you don’t know about. Unknown causes can indicate serious tailbone problems.
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