Sciatica is a common condition, but it is not normal. It can impact the lives of adults of any age. It can disrupt getting a good night’s sleep and keep you from doing the activities you love. Chiropractic care focuses on freeing up your nerves to allow them to function better and your body to heal naturally. With the focus on the source of the problem, patients under chiropractic care usually experience relief of most if not all sciatic pain.
WHAT IS SCIATIC PAIN?
Sciatica is characterized by pain, numbness, irritation, and tingling sensation that typically starts in the buttock area and can travel down the back side of the legs to the feet. It is caused by an irritation or compression of the sciatic nerve.
The sciatic nerve is the longest and widest nerve in the human body. The nerve originates from the lower back, travel through each gluteal (buttocks) and then radiate down the legs, ending in the feet. Typically, the symptoms affect one side of the lower body, but can affect both. The sciatic nerve controls several muscles in the lower leg and supplies sensation to most of the lower leg and the foot’s skin.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF SCIATICA?
Common symptoms include:
- A mild to sharp, excruciating pain or burning sensation that makes it hard to stand up
- Burning or tingling down the back of the leg, foot, and toes
- Feeling like a jolting pain or electric shock
- Hip and lower back pain
- Muscle weakness in your foot or leg
- A constant pain on one side of the rear
- Numbness, or difficulty moving the leg or foot
- Pain in the leg that gets worse when sitting
WHAT CAUSES SCIATIC PAIN?
Sciatic pain is caused by an underlying issue. Various spinal disorders cause sciatica nerve irritation and compression, including:
- Posture: Over time, your posture breaks down due to unbalanced muscle tension that puts stress on your spine and nerves. If this stress goes unchecked in the lower back and hip, it can lead to irritation and or compression of the nerves that form the sciatic nerve.
- Bulging or herniated disc: Trauma and degenerative diseases can cause the disk to bulge through the weak outer wall and irritate and or compress the nerves that form the sciatic nerve.
- Spondylolisthesis: This occurs when one of the discs slips forward over the vertebrae below it, which can put pressure on the nerve and increases the chance of sciatica.
- Lumbar spinal stenosis: The narrowing of the space around the spinal cord may irritate or put pressure on the nerve, which can result in pain, inflammation, and numbness in the affected leg.
- Piriformis syndrome: It’s a condition in which the piriformis muscle located in the buttock region involuntarily tightens or spasms irritating and or compressing the sciatic nerve.
- Osteoarthritis: Bone spurs can irritate and or compress the nerves that form the sciatic nerve.
WHAT IS THE TREATMENT FOR SCIATIC PAIN?
Chiropractic care is a natural method of sciatica treatment and should be considered as a first step to address sciatic pain. At Hunt Spinal Care, we use a gentle approach to chiropractic care that seeks to restore your posture and balance muscle tension to free the nervous system to heal your body as it was designed.
After an initial consultation and exam, we can make sure you are in the right place and offer up a treatment plan. The treatment plan includes a corrective phase, a stabilization phase, and a maintenance phase. It can take some time, but patients of chiropractic care often experience relief from sciatic pain and are able to get back to enjoying the activities of life.
Along with chiropractic care, we may recommend exercises and stretches to help strengthen your core and maintain your posture. Application of ice and/or laser treatments may help to reduce inflammation and speed up the healing process. Yoga, acupuncture, massage and other natural treatments may also be recommended.
If you have been suffering from sciatica seeking professional treatment is essential. For more information please contact Hunt Spinal Care.