What is Sciatica and How Do You Treat It?
Maybe you were lifting a particularly heavy box at work one day or took a bad tackle during a game of pick-up football. Then you all of a sudden felt a sharp pain running from your lower back to your leg. It can be frightening, especially if there’s an accompanying numbness or weakness that makes it difficult to stand. You might be experiencing the medical condition known as sciatica. It is usually caused by a spinal disc bulge or disc herniation pressing on a nerve root.
Having worked in the nursing field for almost a decade, I know a thing or two about sciatica. So, I make sure that I identify the pain and get the help that I need. Read on to see if you have sciatica and what you can do to get relief.
When discussing sciatica symptoms, it should be clear that they can vary greatly. Having said that, the pain usually begins in the spinal area. Then it travels behind the leg in a downward pattern. It may only bother your leg, or just your back, or both. The pain can be dull, radiating or quite sharp.
It can happen after an injury. Lifting heavy weights or sitting for long periods of time. This can compress the spine and spinal nerve roots. Many people also report a numbness feelings in the legs or that always-uncomfortable “pins and needles” sensation. Ranging from a small annoyance to a major problem, sciatica affects people in a variety of ways. The good news is that there is always treatment available.
Just as symptoms of sciatica vary greatly, so do treatments. Medication, chiropractic adjustment, and self-care, including applying ice packs or heat packs, are all used to combat the condition. It isn’t uncommon to see NSAIDs, steroids, or muscle relaxants used to manage the pain of sciatica too. Sometimes, medication therapy can even extend to nerve pain medications.
As far as self-care, bed rest or exercise may be recommended. This proves how widely the treatment of sciatica varies. Chiropractors can help immensely in alleviating pain and treating acute sciatica. That is why they are the recommended point of contact if you feel you have sciatica. Whatever you do, don’t suffer from sciatica and back pain in silence – call a back specialist to book a consultation.
Tips and Aggravators:
You can learn some tips on reducing back pain and nerve stress from a chiropractor. They will help you work on your posture, learn how to lift properly and know your limits for heavy lifting. Sub-par posture can prolong and deepen the issues that cause sciatica. Especially when they compress the spine in unnatural ways. That is why high heels are not your best friend while suffering from sciatica pain.
Sitting or standing for long periods of time without any movement or exercise in between can also be a culprit. Plus, lifting incorrectly at work or the gym, can be a major problem. That is why it so important to make sure you’re properly educated in lifting techniques.
Bottom line, chiropractic care is incredibly helpful when dealing with sciatica. When looking for a chiropractor to help treat sciatic pain, look for one with a high Google rating and ample patient testimonials. More than anything, customer satisfaction speaks to the quality of a back specialist. You don’t have to suffer from sciatica – get a “leg up” on your pain by treating it properly today.
Do you suffer from sciatica?
Let me know, til then–cheers m’deres!
Nancy Polanco is a freelance journalist, lifestyle content creator, and editor of Whispered Inspirations. She is a proud Mom to Gabby and Michaela and partner and best friend to Darasak. Having worked as part of a health care team for almost a decade, Nancy is happy to be back to her passion. She is a contributor to the Huffington Post, TODAY’s Parents, and an Oprah Magazine Brand Ambassador.