One of the most well known parts of the spinal column or vertebral column is the tailbone. This segment is also known as the coccyx. This four or five part portion of the human vertebrae is very fragile and sensitive. The tailbone is joined to the sacrum by a joint that is comprised of cartilage. This area represents the bottom portion of the backbone and is very important for proper body function and operability. There are several ligaments that are attached to the coccyx.
When you have pain in the tailbone area this is called Coccydnia or coccyx pain. Pain in this area should be taken very seriously. This kind of pain can either be caused by the conditions and diseases in that part of the body or it can stem from the actual coccyx bone and the ligaments and muscles connected with it. On most occasions, coccyx pain is caused by sitting in an awkward fashion. When you are sitting for a long period of time, your body puts immense pressure on the tailbone. If you sit down too quickly this could also cause Coccydnia.
When people suffer from traumatic events and then have pain in this area, they are more than likely suffering from coccydnia. Any pressure you put on this area can cause pain. People that enjoy riding their bicycle or even horseback riding are more likely to injure their tailbone. If you have a hard fall or give birth, this too can put pressure on the tailbone. Once you have pain in this area, having sex or defecating can be extremely painful.
A broken tailbone usually is characterized by a fracture that has occurred. It doesn’t necessarily mean that your coccyx is fully broken. Participating in sporting activities, being involved in an accident, or any fall can cause the tailbone to fracture if force impacts the tailbone. Since the tailbone is actually made up of smaller fused vertebrae joined by cartilage, there is a great risk of fracturing one segment. A broken coccyx will leave you feeling tremendous pain in your lower back.
A broken tailbone can be easy to diagnose if you feel pain. Pain is what alerts individuals to the fact that something is wrong. However, some people can have a fractured tailbone and be unaware because there is no pain. If you haven’t been exposing your coccyx to pressure and blunt force, you could still end up with pain in the tailbone area because of conditions that have nearby effects.
The best treatment for a broken tailbone is time. The old saying “time heals all wounds” is true in this case. The symptoms of a fractured tailbone will dissipate and the coccyx will heal on its own over time. To assist the coccyx you should refrain from any activity that will aggravate the symptoms or further worsen the fracture. Using a padded cushion when you sit, doing light exercise and just taking it easy is a great way to encourage bone development and healing.
Written By: Updated: June 24,2011