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The Hidden Culprit Behind Lower Back Pain

Updated: Apr 26

In modern life, due to prolonged periods of incorrect sitting posture, an increasing number of people are experiencing the discomfort of lower back pain. Regardless of your current occupation, sitting posture issues have become the hidden culprit behind lower back pain, not only impacting our physical health but also diminishing our quality of life. However, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) offers beneficial solutions to help improve lower back pain.


Firstly, it is important to understand the impact of incorrect sitting posture on the body. When we maintain incorrect sitting postures for extended periods, such as slouching, rounded shoulders, forward or sideways leaning, it leads to abnormal curvature of the spine and increases the burden on the lumbar vertebrae and back muscles. This poor posture causes the spine to lose its normal support and balance, thereby affecting the muscles, ligaments, and joints of the lower back. Over time, these muscles and structures experience excessive pressure, resulting in the onset of lower back pain.

Do you know the impacts of prolonged sitting posture issues?

  1. Lower back pain: Maintaining a slouched, forward-leaning, or tilted posture for long periods can cause abnormal curvature of the spine, increasing the burden on the lumbar vertebrae and back muscles, leading to chronic lower back pain.

  2. Spinal issues: Incorrect sitting postures may result in spinal misalignment or deformities, increasing pressure on the spinal discs and leading to issues such as herniated discs or degenerative changes in the spine.

  3. Circulation issues: Poor sitting posture can affect blood circulation, limiting blood flow to muscles and tissues, causing inadequate local blood supply and potentially leading to issues such as blood clot formation, muscle stiffness, and swelling.

  4. Eye problems: Incorrect sitting postures can result in unnatural positions of the head and neck, increasing the risk of eye fatigue, dryness, and myopia.

  5. Muscle problems: Prolonged maintenance of the same posture can lead to muscle imbalances and atrophy, increasing the risk of uneven muscle tension and pain.

How does Traditional Chinese Medicine approach lower back pain?

From the perspective of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), lower back pain is believed to be caused by factors such as poor circulation of Qi and blood, as well as blockages in the meridians. TCM offers a range of effective methods to address lower back pain caused by improper sitting postures.


First and foremost, TCM emphasizes the importance of correct sitting posture and body alignment. This includes maintaining the natural curvature of the spine, lifting the chest and head, and relaxing the shoulders and neck. By adjusting the sitting posture, proper support is provided to the spine, reducing the burden on the lumbar vertebrae and back muscles, and alleviating the symptoms of lower back pain.

Traditional Chinese Medicine offers various methods to help improve lower back pain and promote proper sitting posture and overall body health. Here are some TCM methods and recommendations:
  • TCM Massage: TCM massage techniques such as Tui Na and acupressure can help relieve lower back pain, promote circulation of Qi and blood, and alleviate muscle tension and discomfort. Regular massage sessions can help relax the body, promote balance, and enhance overall well-being.

  • Herbal Remedies: Traditional Chinese herbs have properties that can help regulate the body. Individualized herbal prescriptions can be chosen based on specific conditions. For example, certain herbs that promote blood circulation, relax tendons, and harmonize the spleen and stomach can be beneficial for improving lower back pain and enhancing overall health.

  • TCM Exercises: TCM exercises such as Tai Chi and Qigong can help improve posture and body balance. These practices emphasize natural body alignment and breathing, enhancing muscle strength, flexibility, coordination, and balance.

By incorporating these TCM methods and practices into your routine, you can support the improvement of lower back pain, cultivate proper sitting posture, and enhance overall body health.


Furthermore, Traditional Chinese Medicine provides guidance on proper sitting posture and eye protection. Here are some recommendations:
  1. Sitting Posture: Ensure that there is proper support behind the chair, with the body fully resting against it, and maintain an upright sitting position to avoid slouching. Correct sitting posture can alleviate pressure on the lower back and protect spinal health.

  2. Computer and Eyes: Position the computer screen parallel to the eyes, avoiding excessive tilting or looking downwards. Proper alignment of the eyes and computer screen can reduce eye fatigue and dryness.

  3. Hand Position: When using the computer or writing, keep the hands flat on the desk surface, avoiding suspension or excessive stretching. This helps reduce pressure on the wrists and hands, preventing conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome and hand numbness.

In summary, Traditional Chinese Medicine offers various methods to help improve lower back pain, promote proper sitting posture, and enhance overall body health. Practicing correct sitting posture, protecting the eyes, engaging in regular exercise, and taking appropriate breaks in daily life can help reduce the occurrence of lower back pain and maintain overall physical health and comfort.


TCM offers various treatment methods to alleviate and relieve lower back pain

These methods include acupuncture, moxibustion, cupping therapy, Tui Na massage, and bojin plus. Acupuncture, in particular, has been widely recognized as an effective treatment for lower back pain. By stimulating specific acupuncture points, acupuncture can target the affected area, regulate internal balance, and improve the function of the nervous system. It can alleviate lower back pain symptoms, promote circulation of Qi and blood, facilitate tissue repair, and enhance patients' overall quality of life.


Moxibustion is another traditional TCM therapy that involves the burning of mugwort herb to generate heat and stimulate specific acupuncture points. It helps to improve Qi and blood circulation and alleviate lower back pain. Cupping therapy, Tui Na massage, and bone-setting techniques can also help relax tense muscles, promote blood circulation, and improve lower back pain.


In addition to these therapies, TCM also emphasizes the adjustment of diet and lifestyle habits. Proper dietary adjustments can improve nutritional status and enhance the health of muscles and bones. Moreover, a well-balanced work and rest schedule, along with moderate exercise and stretching, can help alleviate lower back pain symptoms.


In summary, one of the underlying causes of lower back pain is improper sitting posture. TCM provides various methods, such as adjusting sitting posture, moxibustion, cupping therapy, and massage, to improve lower back pain. By adopting the correct sitting posture and receiving TCM treatments, we can alleviate lower back pain, enhance overall physical health, and enjoy a better quality of life.

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