Current as of December,2017

How To Prevent Hurting Your Back and avoid Back Pain during Sex

“Sex and Back Pain”
By Jerry Corners, MD

Back pain and sex don’t go together very well and if you or your
partner are among the 35 million people who have back pain, you know
that back pain can disrupt your relationship.

Sex is an important part of the intimacy between couples, and attitudes about sex, about
rejection and about our self-image when we don’t feel up to a sexual
encounter can haunt a couple for a long time.

Sex is supposed to be pleasurable for both of you and the fear of
hurting yourself or your partner inhibits the spontaneous joy that
you probably felt before your back pain developed. But what can you
do about it?

Most couples in which one or the other is restricted
by back pain will eventually get around to realizing that back pain
does not automatically mean no more sex. What it does mean is that
you will need to make some accommodations to the pain and or the
fear of it.  It also means you will need to talk about sex in a
slightly different way than you are used to.

Let’s back up for a second and begin with a very strong suggestion.
Because pain has both a psychological component and a physical
component, getting a sound diagnosis is critical to putting your
mind at rest about what is wrong and secondly having a sound
diagnosis will also give you guidelines for your physical

Secondly, after you have the diagnosis, involve the doctor or
physical therapist in a frank discussion about dos and don’ts.
Maybe that’s an uncomfortable subject for you, but these days we
are talking more openly about sex and you should tap into the
doctor’s experience here.  In a perfect world the doctor would open
the discussion for you, but if they don’t you may have to initiate
it.  Ideally your partner should be present because he or she will
have his or her own questions and concerns.

Starting off right
To start sex off right, start off with a massage, or ice down the
painful area. A warm shower together might help too. That way the
muscles are relaxed.

Here are some sexual positions that can help you enjoy a pain-free
For males:
1. Lay on a firm surface and use pillows to support your knees and
head.  You might like to try placing a small rolled towel under your
lower back.
2. Try a side-by-side position.
4. Place a pillow under your lower back while your partner straddles
you on top. You can also sit in a sturdy chair instead of lying down.
For females:
1. Try missionary position with the legs bent toward the chest.
2. Sit on the edge of a chair and have your kneel between your legs
for entry.
3. Rear entry may also be more comfortable for women with back pain.
Try it kneeling on the bed or lying on your belly with a pillow under
her chest.
4. Sit on your partner’s lap as he sits in a chair.

Remember, the health of your back is dependent on many dynamic factors.
Your symptoms may change over time so you may need to work with your
health care provider from time to time as you go through the many
stages of recovery.

A word of caution is in order at this point.  It
is pretty common to begin feeling better and then overdo it and have
your back pain symptoms flair up.  We call this, the whoopee effect
and it can happen to anyone.  Just remember that as you improve
gradually, so should your activity level also increase gradually.

As I mentioned earlier pain has two parts.  There is the physical part.
This is the actual stimulation of the nerve, like a painful tooth or a
herniated disc pressing on the nerve.  And then there is the subjective
or the psychological part.

This is how it feels to you and includes, among other things, such attitudes as fear that it will get worse or last forever, what will it means to be chronically disabled, and what
you believe your partner thinks about it as well as how you are coping
with your condition.

So, at the top of your agenda there needs to be a frank discussion of
your pain limitations and expectations about sex.  It is a mistake to
believe that your partner understands what it feels like.  It is your
responsibility to communicate those limitations as clearly as possible;
it is their responsibility to listen and try to understand.  Pain, after
all, is invisible and subjective.  That means your pain is unique to you.
We have heard people liken back pain to everything from a hot poker
going down one or both legs to a chronic aching sensation localized to
the lumbar area.  It doesn’t matter what words you use, just try to
explain the pain, what causes it (position, certain movements, or
whatever), and what feels good or is what is comfortable for you.

Is it obvious that if it hurts, don’t do it is generally good advice but
some positions and techniques hurt more than others? It may require some
gentle experimentation to find out what works but as in most sex advice,
“gentle” is the best place to start.

In terms of maximizing yours and your partner’s sexual pleasure, it is
very important to stress that all you really need is your imagination and
the willingness to experiment to open up new areas of intimacy.  But it
all begins with willingness to try.  And given that, you just may find
that the lemon of back pain can be turned into the lemonade of new
sources of mutual pleasure.

About the author: For more information on Back Pain and how to treat it
effectively, read the latest Back Pain Advisory:  How to Prevent Back Pain

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

How to Get Rid of Back Pain 01.25.12 at 1:11 pm

An interesting topic indeed. I personally think that people with back pain from a diagnosed spinal problem should seek medical advice on how to perform sexual activity basing on the location of affected site, type of spinal problem and other conditions that might affect the activity.

Spatch Merlin

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