Lower Right Back Pain | Prevention, Causes & Treatment

Lower right back pain is a very specific pain that can be caused a variety of different ways. 7 common causes of lower right back pain are discussed below. It is important that you consult with a doctor or medical professional before starting, ending, or changing any medical routine. This website contains articles and videos that deal with the prevention, causes and treatments of this unique condition.

Why People Experience Lower Right Back Pain

  • Being Right-Handed

Most people are right handed, causing them to lift and carry with the right side of their body, explaining the isolated pain in the lower right back. Men often carry over-sized wallets in their right back pocket which causes poor posture when sitting. Those of us who travel, pull, carry or haul our belongings over our right shoulder, causing additional strain.

  • Sleeping Positions

Do you sleep on your right side? Some studies have shown that sleeping positions can lead to lower back pain on the ride side. In short, any number of activities or habits could have caused this pain in your lower right side of your back. However, we are missing a link in this equation.

Let’s assume that because you schlepped your mother-in-law’s over-sized purse over your right shoulder you are now experiencing this isolated pain. Although the “schlepping” may have triggered the injury, there is more likely something happening internally that is actually causing the pain. This is what we need to figure in order to treat the pain and prevent it from occurring again.

Often, lower back pain can be eased and treated with stretching and exercises.

7 Common Lower Right Back Pain Causes

1. Herniated or Slipped Disc


The most common reason people experience pain in the lower right part of the back is from a herniated disc. Without getting technical, a herniated disc occurs when the disc at the base of your back becomes “outta whack!” Sudden movement, compression, disease, or other misuse may have caused the disc to slip.  When the disc is out of its normal position – it hurts! More specifically, this disc could be affecting a nerve connected to the lower right side of the back.

A herniated disc does not necessarily mean you will have pain in the right lower back. Experiencing that pain also does not necessarily mean you have a herniated disc. Additionally, you are most at risk to get a herniated or slipped disc from “strenuousness at work,” according to a March 2013 study shared by the National Institutes of Health. Research suggests physical activity rarely causes a herniated disc, instead, physical fitness can prevent and heal a herniated disc and your lower right back pain. If you believe you have a herniated disc, please review these herniated disc exercises with your doctor.

2. Lumbar Strain


Another common reason people experience pain in the lower right back is from a lumbar strain or, simply put, a muscle strain. Your lumbar is located at the base of your back (including the right side). The same causes of a herniated disc (sudden movement, compression, or other misuse) can cause a lumbar strain. A typical lumbar strain has microscopic tears within the lumbar. Although small, they can create extraordinary levels of pain. More severe lumbar strains can cause debilitating levels of pain and require extensive physical therapy and treatment.

3. Quadratus Lumborum Issues 

Don’t let the medical jargon throw you. Simply put, the “Quadratus Lumborum” is the muscle that allows you to move your spine from side to side. We’ll call it “QL,” and it works with several other muscles to provide you great posture (among other things). Sometimes, the QL can get knotted without you realizing it. Pain only arrives when the QL experiences pressure or stress. Do you see how these “silent” knots can create pain on the lower right side of your back?

A common theme among back pains is that proper stretching and exercise can prevent the majority of problems. So, be sure to move your Quadratus Lumborum around and safely stretch your other muscles as well. This will give you a better chance of avoiding painful knots in your back.

4. Sacroiliac Joint Issues 

The Sacroiliac Joints are located between your hips and your spine. They, like the rest of your body, require movement and exercise to maintain good health. Too little movement causes these joints to lock. Too much movement and they can be easily sprained. Because of their location (just inside the hip), an injured sacroiliac joint has been known to cause lower right back pain. Often times, the these joins need to be stretched using exercises for Sciatica.

5. Sciatica 

First, the sciatic nerve runs from your lower back to your feet, and it’s the longest nerve in your body! “Sciatica” is the diagnosis of pain that is caused when the sciatic nerves are compromised. This happens in a variety of different ways but is commonly due to a herniated disc. If the sciatic nerves are compressed, it will naturally be uncomfortable and can lead to pain in your legs, pain in your thighs, and of course, pain on the right side of your lower back. Occasionally, sciatica surgery is required.

6. Kidney Issues

Yes, your kidneys can be the cause of your pain on the lower right side! A kidney infection and kidney stones can cause these organs, on your right side, to swell and become inflamed. Kidney inflammation is obviously uncomfortable, and to compensate, many people improperly adjust their posture. This poor posture leads to even more stress on their lower back, creating even more pain.

7. Appendicitis

Just like potential kidney issues, an appendicitis can also severely aggravate the lower right part of your back. Ignoring an appendicitis can lead to internal poisoning — and even death! This is not a condition to ignore. If you have reason to believe this is the cause of any pain or discomfort, seek medical attention immediately!

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Other Causes of Lower Right Back Pain

This list only covers some of the more common causes of lower right back pain. There are several other reasons you may be experiencing pain. At least some of these conditions remain mysterious to doctors as to their cause and/or origin (e.g. piriformis syndrome, a possible diagnosis once Sciatica is ruled out.)

  • In general, lower right back pain is caused by any stress or strain on the muscles and ligaments of that region. For many of us, this includes all the activities we perform which involve our right side. Considering most people are right-handed, lifting, pushing, and pulling with your right hand can create pain on the lower right back.
  • Take some time to look around this site and become more well-informed, but also remember – seeing a doctor who specializes in your condition will provide incredible benefits. According to WebMd.com, 8 out of 10 people will experience back pain. Don’t be one of them!

Here’s to a life of better health!

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