Psychosomatics of Lower Back Pain: Causes and Treatment

The first thought that comes to mind with pain in the lower back and sacrum is catching a cold, awkward movement, back strain, etc. However, not everyone knows that the cause of pain can be hidden in emotional overstrain, nervous breakdowns. Psychosomatics will explain why the lower back hurts.

Spine Structure

The spine is an elongated, flexible bone column from the head to the pelvis. It consists of 33 vertebrae, divided into sections:

  • Cervical (7 vertebrae);
  • Thoracic (12 vertebrae);
  • Lumbar (5 vertebrae);
  • Sacral (5 vertebrae);
  • Coccygeal (4 vertebrae).

Interesting Fact! From a psychosomatic perspective, the spine connects the past and present, conducting life energy. The cervical part symbolizes psychological flexibility, the thoracic is responsible for emotions, and the lumbar reflects a person’s attitude towards themselves and the world.

Causes of Lower Back Pain

Psychosomatics (lumbar) is diagnosed in more than 50% of cases. Lower back pain speaks of fear of material and financial difficulties, poverty. Additional psychosomatic reasons for lower back pain include:

  • Hyper-responsibility, taking on others’ duties;
  • Lack of support from close ones;
  • Fatigue;
  • Feeling of hopelessness;
  • Suppressed anger and cruelty;
  • Fear of career-building.

Pain transitioning from the lower back to the sacrum indicates unresolved internal conflict, resentment, and negative personal experiences in the intimate sphere (possibly violence). Problems in sexual life can arise from self-image issues and complexes, leading to suppressed desires and muscle spasms.

Psychosomatic Causes of Back and Lower Back Pain

The spine is the inner core that helps withstand life’s blows. The lumbar area bears the maximum emotional load. Each part of the back has its psychosomatic significance.

Factors Affecting the Upper Part

The upper back represents the energy of love. People with pain in this area feel unloved and try hard to gain affection and recognition, to earn attention and love. Unrequited love causes guilt, resentment, and anger. Unable to express this negativity, they experience an additional burden on their back.

Impact on the Middle Section

The middle back reflects grievances and unresolved conflicts. These individuals are fixated on the past, reliving old grievances. They may blame themselves for past actions or inactions.

Interesting Fact! Pain in the middle back often occurs in people who experienced violence or pressure in childhood, possibly due to authoritarian upbringing, leading to chronic guilt. These old traumas and unresolved issues cause back pain.

Pains in the Lower Back

Psychosomatic reasons for lower back pain include:

  • Financial instability and insecurity;
  • Mistrust;
  • Fear of material difficulties;
  • Perception of life as a heavy burden;
  • Fear of aging;
  • Psychoemotional exhaustion;
  • Fear of the future.


Spasm and shooting pain in the lumbar muscles often occur on one side, leading to curvature. Prolonged retention of this spinal position leads to vertebrae displacement and nerve pinching, causing pain in the leg, buttock, and foot. Over time, curvature leads to compression of spinal discs, resulting in protrusions and hernias. From a psychosomatic perspective, curvature indicates a lack of resignation, a clinging to outdated ideas.

Causes of Hernia in the Lumbar Region

A hernia symbolizes a feeling of being cornered and extreme fatigue. The person wants to change circumstances but cannot due to fear. For example, they can’t quit an unpleasant job due to fear of financial difficulties. The rupture of the disc is the result of a conflict between movement and resistance.

Causes of Lumbar Osteochondrosis

Psychosomatics of osteochondrosis: excessive activity as an attempt to compensate for self-doubt, life’s mental burdens (often observed in women burdened with family responsibilities). Chronic osteochondrosis is a result of frustration, deep disappointment, and dissatisfaction, possibly due to unfulfilled personal life or career.

Summary Table of Psychosomatics of the Back and Lower Back

Each section of the back corresponds to its psychological causes. Here’s a summary table of back pains (according to Louise Hay):

Section of the BackProblemAffirmation
Lower Part (Lumbar Sacral Region)Financial instability, fear of material misfortune"I trust life. I always receive what I need. Everything is fine with me. I am prosperous."
Middle Part (Thoracic Region)Guilt, dwelling on the past, the thought of "leave me alone""I let go of the past and move forward with love."
Neck RegionSelf-dislike, suppressed feelings, lack of support"I love and accept myself. Life supports me."

Lower Back Pain Psychosomatics, Psychological Causes of Back Diseases

Back problems indicate a lack of support and stability in life. The person feels as if others are “sitting on their neck.” This leads to irritation and anger. Lower back pain signifies taking on too much, being close to breaking.

Emotional Blockage

Back pain reflects emotional instability, doubts, and hesitations. Such a person needs constant movement and achievement to feel loved. The pain may arise from fatigue and a desire for rest, hidden for fear of others’ rejection. Back pain also occurs when one has high demands on others, who cannot meet them, leaving the person to cope alone.

Mental Blockage

It’s important to realize that actions for others should come from a pure heart. Love is received only when given. Enjoy the process itself, not just the reward. Recognize that people may not act as expected. Everyone is unique with their own opinions. You are likely already loved, just in different ways than expected. Learn to express your desires and accept others’ traits. Share what’s important to you and the kind of love you seek. Cultivating self-love is even better, bringing confidence and reducing the burden of trying to earn love.


Lower back pain points to a lack of certain benefits, often material well-being, but also family, leisure, or relaxation needs. It may stem from job dissatisfaction or fear of job loss, or lack of partner support. The sufferer needs something to feel secure, often without realizing it.

How to Treat Psychosomatic Diseases

Psychosomatic illnesses require comprehensive treatment: medication (injections, pills, ointments for symptom relief), psychotherapy (analyzing past traumas and learning emotional expression), exercise (stretching muscles and spine, strengthening the musculoskeletal frame), diet, and other supportive measures. Tranquilizers, antidepressants, and other medicines might be needed for mental state correction. Internal harmony and harmony with the world need to be restored. Learn to live in the present and enjoy life.

Additional Steps:

  • Overcome fears.
  • Adjust expectations and demands on oneself.
  • Realize that dreams can become reality with realistic goals and a plan.
  • Develop self-confidence and self-assessment.
  • Love yourself.

Important! If unable to identify the pain’s cause or create a rehabilitation plan, visit a psychologist.

Harmonizing Practice for Eliminating Back Pain

Combine therapy with physical activity and autotraining. Use this harmonizing practice:

  1. Close your eyes.
  2. Focus on your spine. Is it curved or straight, heavy or light? Or curved and light simultaneously? Be honest with yourself. Consider what these sensations might mean.
  3. Say the harmonizing phrase: “I am in complete balance and harmony with myself. I flow easily with the tumultuous stream of life. I let go of my past and the pain others once caused me. Everything in my life is wonderful.”

Psychosomatics of Lower Back Diseases According to Psychologists

Let’s explore the theories of famous psychologists: Louise Hay, V. Zhikarentsev, Liz Bourbo, V. Sinelnikov.

Louise Hay

According to Louise Hay, lower back pain signifies stubbornness and fatigue. Healing affirmation: “In my life, I embody both strength and power. I consign the past to oblivion and rely on my own strengths.”


V. Zhikarentsev attributes the cause to dwelling on the past, self-blame, stubbornness, and internal disharmony. Healing affirmation: “I am in complete balance with myself. I flow gently and easily with the stream of life. I release the past and the pain inflicted on me. Everything is wonderful in my life.”

Liz Bourbo

The cause is the distress caused by the inability to control other people or situations. To heal, one must relax and allow others to be themselves. There’s no need to defend or try to please them.


The cause is fear for money and material well-being. The psychologist advises changing thinking, as the nature of life depends solely on our perception. As long as you perceive it as a burden, it will remain so.

Holmes and Rahe Stress Test for Psychosomatic Susceptibility

Susceptibility to psychosomatics is directly related to stress resilience: the higher the resilience, the lower the susceptibility. In 1967, Doctors Holmes and Rahe developed a test to determine stress resilience.

How to take the test: From the table, select the situations that have occurred to you in the past year. If an event repeated several times, count it as many times as it occurred. Then, calculate the total sum of all situations (points for each episode are listed in the table below).

1Death of a spouse100 points
2Divorce73 points
3Marital separation65 points
4Imprisonment63 points
5Death of a close family member63 points
6Personal injury or illness53 points
7Marriage50 points
8Dismissal from work47 points
9Marital reconciliation45 points
10Retirement45 points
11Illness of a family member44 points
12Pregnancy (or partner's pregnancy)40 points
13Sex difficulties39 points
14Addition to the family39 points
15Changing workplace39 points
16Financial changes38 points
17Death of a close friend37 points
18Changing type of work36 points
19Increased arguments with spouse/partner35 points
20Major loan31 points
21Debts, financial difficulties30 points
22Career change, increased responsibilities29 points
23Child leaving home29 points
24Problems with in laws29 points
25Achieving personal success28 points
26Spouse's start or end of work26 points
27Entering or finishing university26 points
28Any changes in living conditions25 points
29Changes in habits, behavior24 points
30Workplace conflicts23 points
31Changing work hours/schedule20 points
32Moving20 points
33Changing schools20 points
34Vacation or changes in vacation habits19 points
35Changes in religious beliefs19 points
36Changes in social activities18 points
37Minor loan17 points
38Changes in sleeping habits, including sleep disorders16 points
39Changing frequency/nature of family visits15 points
40Any changes in diet15 points
41Taking a holiday13 points
42Christmas, New Year, Birthdays12 points
43Fines or covert violations of the law11 points

Interpretation of the Results:

  • 200–274 points – Normal stress level, good stress resilience;
  • 275–299 points – Dangerous level of stress, low stress resilience;
  • More than 300 points – Any problem causes significant distress; it can be confidently stated that all your illnesses have psychosomatic origins.

Important! If your test results fall into the second or third category, it is crucial to seek help from a psychotherapist immediately!

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