Find out what can be behind the ache in your tailbone when you’ve been sitting.

Does your tailbone hurt after you’ve been sitting for a while, even though you haven’t recently fallen on it?

“Although there is not one single answer to this question, the most common cause is coccydynia,” says Dr. Mark Galland, orthopedic surgeon, sports medicine specialist and physician at Orthopaedic Specialists of North Carolina.

“This is a condition in which the smallest segment of the spine, the coccyx or tailbone, is irritated or inflamed,” continues Dr. Galland.

“This type of inflammation can be caused by arthritis, or post-traumatic or repetitive stress. This is a condition that is seen more commonly in slender people who do not have very much tissue in that area of their body.”

Does this mean that you should gain weight if your tailbone has been hurting or aching from sitting?

If you’ve always felt you were underweight, then perhaps it’s time to increase your caloric intake by eating more “clean” whole foods such as chicken, turkey, lamb, grass-fed beef, nuts and whole grains. Take up strength training to add muscle.

A physically fit person, or to put it another way, a person with a well-trained body, should not experience tailbone from sitting as long as the seat is comfortable rather than a hard slab of wood.

But if you’ve made sure the seat is comfortable and padded, and if people often call you “thin,” then maybe some healthy weight gain is in order.

Eating more junk food to add more fat is not a good solution to eliminating the hurt of a tailbone from sitting.

Make it a point to avoid sitting for long than 30-45 minutes at a time; get up every so often and walk around. Make sure your posture is correct when sitting.

Dr. Galland has authored many book chapters and papers in sports medicine. His advice and consultation have been sought by world-class athletes in track and field and Major League Baseball.