I guess you’re here because you recently fell, and now you can feel that unbearable tailbone pain, and trust me we all have been there. Coccyx pain is widely known nowadays, due to a sedentary lifestyle, but today we are going to focus on tailbone pain caused by falling. The tailbone is also known as a coccyx. We’re going to answer your question: how long does it take for your tailbone to heal after falling?
The healing time of coccyx injury will depend on the severity of that injury, if it’s only a small bruise it can heal on itself in about 3 to 5 weeks, but some injuries cannot heal by themselves, but there are some exceptions to that, and we will tell you more later in this article.
What should I do when my tailbone is in pain?
There are many types of tailbone injuries and the ones caused by falling can be really bad. If your pain isn’t disappearing after one week or two, you should immediately consult your injury with an orthopedist. The doctor will direct you for an X-Ray to see what exactly happened to your coccyx, and what should be done to relieve from that pain.
If the tailbone has any fractures it can heal on its own, but from the information, we have got from HealthLine about 10% of tailbone fractures will need surgery to let your tailbone heal. In the worst-case scenario, you can be directed for a coccygectomy, it is a special type of surgery that basically will remove part of your coccyx, to relieve your pain. Note that the coccyx is mostly useless in your body right now, for our ancestors it was useful to stabilize posture when walking.
If that pain is slowly decreasing after each day, you can let it heal for itself, in that case, you can try to use special orthopedic pillows to sit on, they have a hole in it to ease your coccyx from your weight, also you can do ask for rehabilitations. We recently posted a full article on how to deal with coccyx pain, so take a look if you want to ease the pain.
How long does it take for your tailbone to heal after falling?
A fall can be the cause of your tailbone injury, especially if you’ve landed on your buttocks, but remember that there can be other reasons for your tailbone pain, like sitting in unhealthy ways, sports, or bad posture. Make sure it was 100% caused by a fall.
A small bruise can be healed in 3 weeks but it depends on your age, overall health, or even weight, in that case even if it was only a small bruise it will heal itself in 5 weeks.
However, if your bone is fractured the average recovery time can take up to 12 weeks to heal. So make sure if it’s just a bruise or something more with an X-ray diagnosis. If you don’t need any surgery then physical therapy and the use of special cushions are the most effective forms of treatment. Options to heal your tailbone without any surgery can be:
- Spinal cord stimulation _incontent_46 - incontent_46 -->
- Steroids injection
- Manual massages
- Electrical nerve stimulation
Women are more likely to get any tailbone injury than men, That’s because their tailbone is more exposed in their bodies. In some cases, tailbones can fracture during childbirth, and also during pregnancy.
What are the symptoms of a fractured tailbone?
How can you know if your coccyx was injured? There are many symptoms that can tell you if your tailbone is broken:
- Swelling around the tailbone or even on the buttocks.
- An almost constant dull pain in the very low back, just above the buttocks, especially if you touch it.
- Pain that increases during a bowel movement.
- Pain that worsens when sitting and when standing up from a sitting position.
- Pain that increases during sexual intercourse.
- If you touch the lowest spot on your spine it should be the coccyx, and there should be pain related to it.
If you have any of the above then contact your nearest orthopedist to make some professional diagnosis like an X-ray to make sure if that is just a bruise or bone fracture.
How to speed up the healing process?
To speed up your recovery process you will need to focus on doing no more harm to that part and give it proper rest. Try to avoid sitting on your tailbone, try to stand at the desk rather than sitting, if you can’t do that, try to take some breaks every 30 minutes, to let it relax a bit.
It’s hard to make this process faster, so your main goal should be to do no more harm, and adjust to orthopedist advice. Overall if you want to make the healing process faster then you should:
- Stop any physical activities that can cause pain.
- Avoid sitting for long periods.
- Sleep on a soft mattress.
- Use a gel or cushion donut pillow when sitting.
- Put some ice cubes or ice packs on your tailbone for about 20 minutes 3 times every day.
- Consult every unexpected pain related to your coccyx.
Fractured coccyx in children
Children tend to fall or slip more often than adults, also they don’t have that strong bone structure as adults. Remember that your child won’t complain about pain until it is something important, so you should take your child for a medical consult as quickly as possible. If not treated well enough it can be the cause of much pain when they grow up.
In conclusion, how long does it take for your tailbone to heal after falling?
If you’re lucky then 3 to 5 weeks should be enough but if your tailbone is fractured then even 12 weeks can’t be enough. That will exclude you from any physical activities and your job. You should also avoid sitting, buy a special orthopedist pillow to ease your pain a bit, and take some breaks between sitting periods. You can find that pillow on any merchant site in your country for about 10$ USD. That will help you recover faster.