Tailbone pain (Coccydynia ) : How can I relieve it?

The coccyx is the terminal segment of the spine. Coccydynia or Coccygodynia is pain in the region of the coccyx. There is no evidence-based study that reports the exact incidence of Coccydynia, however it is often associated with obesity and female gender.

Common causes of coccydynia include:

  • childbirth
  • an injury or a fall
  • repeated strain on the coccyx
  • trauma
  • hypermobility

Presentation and indicative factors :

The main symptom of coccydynia is pain over the region of the coccyx. This pain can feel worse after:

  • Prolonged sitting/standing
  • Standing up from a seated position
  • During sexual intercourse
  • Bowel movements



Coccydynia is usually not permanent, but it may become very persistent and chronic if not controlled. If you have been diagnosed with it here are some self-care measures that could help you reduce the pain.

  1. Use a Coccyx cushion, specially designed to reduce the pressure over the painful region.
  2. Apply hot and cold pads that relieve aches and pain
  3. Avoid prolonged postures and especially prolonged sitting
  4. Self-massage the area
  5. Make postural adjustments


A physiotherapist can help you relieve the pain through manipulation,  soft tissue techniques and exercising protocols. It is commonly recommended when the conservative treatment and self management protocols have failed to relieve the coccygeal pain.

Author: Andreas Ouogko BSc- Chartered Physiotherapist, Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist.