What is coccydynia?
Coccydynia is pelvic pain experienced over the tailbone or coccyx area, which usually worsens with prolonged sitting.
What causes coccydynia? What are common symptoms of coccydynia?
Coccydynia can be caused by a fall to the tailbone area, after prolonged pressure to the area or during/after pregnancy. The most common symptom of coccydynia is pain located on or around the tailbone/coccyx.
How can Physiotherapy help my coccydynia?
Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy can offer a few different options when it comes to treatment for coccydynia. Hands on treatments, which will include soft tissue work, manual mobilization of the coccyx and work on the surrounding structures. Also, a home exercise program with a focus on posture, especially sitting posture will be important in resolving the pain associated with coccydynia.
What are the best exercises to help with my coccydynia?
The best exercises to start with are ones that focus on your sitting posture. Sitting in a posterior pelvic tilt can put more pressure directly on the coccyx or tailbone area. It can also keep your pelvic floor muscles in a short, tight position. This can cause the muscles of the pelvic floor to pull on the coccyx, which can lead to pain and coccydynia. Sitting in an upright posture, with a neutral pelvis, with or without manual support from a donut or a rolled towel can help alleviate the direct pressure on the coccyx.
From there, focusing on relaxing the pelvic floor muscles and the surrounding tissue can help to decrease the pain and discomfort associated with coccydynia.
Check out the following link to learn more about Neutral Pelvis and Proper Posture (hyperlink to the Neutral Pelvis and Proper Posture Exercise Page)
Please keep in mind that these exercises were designed as a place to start to address your symptoms. These exercises should not be performed or continued if they cause or increase your pain in any way. Using these exercises for self-management of your symptoms does not replace the value of being assessed by a Health Professional. If you find you need help, let a Strive Pelvic Health Rehabilitation Physiotherapist help you, book your time today! (hyperlink to online booking site: https://striveto.janeapp.com)
What can I do to treat my coccydynia at home?
Sitting on a donut or a rolled towel can help decrease the pressure place directly on your coccyx and make sitting more tolerable. Also, learning how to find a neutral spine and pelvic position when sitting can help reduce the tension that may be present in the pelvic floor muscles.
Lastly, learning how to relax your pelvic floor muscles and breathe properly with your diaphragm can help reduce the tension in the pelvic floor muscles that is often found with coccydynia.
Written in 2020 by
BPHE, BSc, MScPT
Pelvic Health Rehabilitation
Stephanie has curated a Physiotherapy tool box that allows her multiple points of view to meet her patients’ needs. She has taken courses in the McKenzie Method for assessing and treating spinal conditions. She has completed mat and reformer Rehabilitative Pilates courses through Stott Pilates, training she uses to create customized exercise programs. Understanding the roll of the pelvic floor in the effective treatment of low back pain, sacroiliac joint dysfunction, bowel and bladder dysfunction and during a women’s journey from pre-natal to post-natal, she has completed Pelvic Health Rehabilitation courses. She is qualified to perform internal assessment and treatment of the pelvic floor.