What Are the Main Causes of Upper Back Pain?

causes of upper back pain
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The word “pain” comes from the Latin word toilas, meaning “distress or unease.”

We can’t seem to survive without some level of it. It can be a warning system, protecting us from serious damage to our bodies.

Have you been suffering from upper back pain, and wondered what the culprit is? In this guide, we’ll be exploring the most frequent causes of upper back pain and what you can do about it.

Lack of Mobility

When we don’t move around enough, our muscles and joints stiffen up and this can lead to pain. Oftentimes, this pain is due to trigger points, or knots, that form in the muscles when they’re not used enough.

To prevent upper back pain, it’s important to keep the muscles and joints in the area mobile and to avoid sitting or standing in one position for too long.

Poor Posture

Poor posture can be caused by a number of things, including slouching, hunching over, and sitting or standing in one position for too long. Poor posture puts strain on the muscles and ligaments in the back and can lead to pain and stiffness.

There are a number of ways to improve posture and reduce the risk of upper back pain, including exercises to strengthen the back and shoulder muscles, stretching, and paying attention to posture throughout the day.

Weak Muscles

When the muscles in your upper back are weak, they can’t properly support your spine and hold it in alignment. This can lead to a number of issues, including pain, stiffness, and even posture problems. Strengthening the muscles in your upper back is essential for preventing and treating this type of pain.

There are a variety of exercises and stretches that can help how to get rid of back pain. Working with a physical therapist or going to a chiropractor can ensure that you are doing them correctly and getting the most benefit.

Aging as One of the Causes of Upper Back Pain

The main causes of upper back pain in relation to aging are degenerative changes in the discs and joints, muscular imbalances, and poor posture. Degenerative changes in the discs and joints occur as we age and the discs lose water content and become less spongy. Muscular imbalances can develop as we age and the muscles around the spine weaken. This can cause the spine to become unstable and lead to pain.


Upper back pain is oftentimes caused by inflammation in the shoulder blades or upper back region. Inflammatory conditions such as arthritis may also lead to upper back pain. In some cases, upper back pain could be a symptom of a more serious condition such as a herniated disc or spinal stenosis. Do not delay your visit to a healthcare professional.

See a Healthcare Professional

There are many possible causes of upper back pain, but some are more common than others. We have enumerated them in this article. If you are suffering from upper back pain, it is important to see a doctor to rule out any serious causes. Then, you can work on treating the pain with the help of a physical therapist or other healthcare professional.

So, let’s get to the root of your upper back pain. And for more great information about back health, visit our website today.

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Alice Christina, a seasoned health writer, combines her passion for wellness with a strong foundation in evidence-based research. She crafts insightful content that empowers readers to make informed health decisions. Alice's expertise shines through her concise and reliable health articles.