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What Causes Left Side Aches?

Left side aches can stem from various causes, ranging from benign muscle strains to serious conditions like kidney stones or heart issues. Understanding the nuances of your pain is crucial for proper diagnosis and treatment. Are you experiencing a dull ache or a sharp pain? Let's delve deeper into the potential reasons behind your discomfort and what they could signify. What does your pain tell you?
Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

There are many things that may lead to left side aches. Among the most common are stress on the muscles and conditions that affect a person’s back, such as a herniated disk. Sometimes a person may also have aches on the left side because of kidney stones or a condition called diverticulitis, which affects the digestive tract. Additionally, a person may have referred pain on his left side, which means he may have pain in this area because of a condition in another part of his body.

One of the things that may cause left side aches is muscle stress. If a person has engaged in a lot of physical activity, he may have achiness on his left side for this reason. Likewise, a person may experience achiness in this part of the body after he suffers a blow to the area or a fall. In such a case, he may experience achiness that gradually diminishes as he heals.

Muscle stress may cause left side aches.
Muscle stress may cause left side aches.

A condition called diverticulitis, which occurs when small pouches in a person’s digestive system get infected or become inflamed, may also cause left side aches. Usually, this aching develops on the lower left side of a patient’s abdomen. In addition to the pain, the affected person may also have a fever and experience chills, nausea, and vomiting. Stomach cramps and constipation or loose bowels may also develop as a side effect of the condition. This is a serious condition that requires swift medical attention.

A herniated disc may cause left side aches.
A herniated disc may cause left side aches.

An individual may also experience left side aches because of a condition or problem that affects his kidneys. For example, kidney stones, which are hard deposits of minerals and salts that form in the kidneys, cause pain in the side. In addition to pain in the side, kidney stones may cause such symptoms as pain when urinating, lower abdominal pain, discolored urine, blood in the urine, and nausea and vomiting. In some cases, it may cause fever and chills as well.

A computed tomography (CT) scan can be used to determine the cause of abdominal pain.
A computed tomography (CT) scan can be used to determine the cause of abdominal pain.

Sometimes pain on the lower left side is caused by an issue with the patient’s back. For example, if a person has a herniated disc, this can sometimes cause pain in the left side of the back. Spinal arthritis, which is marked by inflammation of the spinal joints may lead to pain in this area as well.

Interestingly, a person may also have referred pain on his left side. This may occur when an individual has a condition or injury that affects one part of the body but causes pain in an entirely separate area. Referred pain on the left side of the body may result from conditions in the chest, parts of the back or in the abdomen. For example, pancreatitis can result in referred left side pain.

Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

Nicole’s thirst for knowledge inspired her to become a TheHealthBoard writer, and she focuses primarily on topics such as homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. When not writing or spending time with her four children, Nicole enjoys reading, camping, and going to the beach.

Learn more...
Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

Nicole’s thirst for knowledge inspired her to become a TheHealthBoard writer, and she focuses primarily on topics such as homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. When not writing or spending time with her four children, Nicole enjoys reading, camping, and going to the beach.

Learn more...

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Discussion Comments

Axeleye

If left side aches are due to muscle strain, the arnica herb is an excellent topical treatment. Either strain the herb to create the healing liquid, or purchase it pre-made. Other options include raw, unprocessed apple cider vinegar, which can be applied topically or used in a bath. Heating pads are also helpful, as are warm baths featuring lavender essential oil, which relaxes the muscles among other properties.

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    • Muscle stress may cause left side aches.
      By: JackF
      Muscle stress may cause left side aches.
    • A herniated disc may cause left side aches.
      By: damato
      A herniated disc may cause left side aches.
    • A computed tomography (CT) scan can be used to determine the cause of abdominal pain.
      By: Pavel Losevsky
      A computed tomography (CT) scan can be used to determine the cause of abdominal pain.
    • Some people may experience left side aches because of a problem that affects their kidneys, such as kidney stones.
      By: airborne77
      Some people may experience left side aches because of a problem that affects their kidneys, such as kidney stones.
    • A herniated disc can be the cause of pain on the left side of the back.
      By: rob3000
      A herniated disc can be the cause of pain on the left side of the back.
    • A kidney stone is a solid mass that develops from crystals that separate from urine and build up on the inner surfaces of the kidney.
      By: 3drenderings
      A kidney stone is a solid mass that develops from crystals that separate from urine and build up on the inner surfaces of the kidney.