How to Relieve Sciatica Pain

Posted by Andy Thomas ● December 30, 2019

What is Sciatica?

Sciatica is pain that extends from the back down one of leg (usually only one, but it can affect both legs in some cases). It’s caused by pressure on the sciatic nerve, which sends signals from your hips to your legs. A herniated disc, a stress fracture, or even the added weight during pregnancy can cause this pressure, resulting in sciatic nerve pain.  

How To Relieve Sciatica Pain at Home

Because sciatica is really the side effect of another condition, it’s best to understand the root cause of the pain. From there your doctor or chiropractor can give you specific things that can help improve your condition and reduce the pain of sciatica. 

While you’re experiencing sciatica, here are a few things you can do to help with the symptoms:

  1. Apply heat and/or ice. An ice pack or a heating pad can help with sciatica. The important thing is to put it in the right place. Although most of the pain is in your leg, the inflammation causing it is all in your lower back. You need to apply treatment to your lower back for about fifteen minutes. It's sometimes helpful to have another person do this. Whether it’s heat or cold that gives the most relief varies from person to person. You can also try alternating both. Sometimes heat can help when applied to your buttock or the back of the affected leg.
  2. Non-prescription pain killer such as ibuprofen or naproxen. Talk to the pharmacist about it if you’re unsure what to use, or to your chiropractor if they did not already give you recommendations.
  3. Massage. A massage therapist is trained on how to help reduce sciatic pain, but you can’t always get to a massage therapist when you’re in pain. You can give yourself some relief using 1-2 tennis balls. Lie on the floor and place the tennis ball under your buttock or thigh, roll over it until you find a tender spot and apply gentle pressure. If you feel intense pain, stop. You can also place the ball between your back and a chair and roll the ball on your buttocks or lower back.
  4. Stretch. There are some simple yoga stretches that can do a lot to relieve sciatica pain. Talk to your chiropractor to make sure you don't do the wrong stretch and make your problems worse. Keep doing these stretches after the underlying condition is resolved can also help prevent future pain. If your chiropractor recommends different stretches or modifications, make sure to follow their guidelines.
  5. Meditation. Meditation and relaxation techniques can lower your stress, help you deal with the pain and relax your muscles, which can relieve pressure on the nerve.
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Chiropractic Treatment For Sciatica

As already mentioned, if you have sciatica you need to get yourself checked out. The most common cause of sciatica is a herniated disk, which your chiropractor can help with. It can also be caused by other issues that your chiropractor can help with. 

Some of the treatment recommended for sciatica pain relief include:

  1. Massage therapy. As mentioned earlier, massage is a good way to release the muscles and encourage more blood flow to help heal the area. A professional massage therapist, especially one with a chiropractor, will understand how and where to place pressure to help relieve sciatica.
  2. Nonsurgical spinal decompression. This is used to treat herniated discs and can help with degenerative disc disease. This non-invasive treatment consists of gentle motorized spinal traction. Each treatment will last fifteen to thirty minutes. In many cases, this treatment can relieve your issues without surgery. It can also directly remove pressure from the sciatic nerve by realigning the spine.
  3. Cold laser therapy. This is an FDA approved treatment for back and joint pain, using a low intensity laser (one which doesn't generate heat) to encourage blood flow to the affected area and promote healing. This can help reduce inflammation and swelling and relieve pressure on the nerve.

If you have sciatica, then you know how painful it can be, and you are probably looking for help. Contact Village Chiropractic today to schedule an appointment for an evaluation so we can come up with a course of treatment for you.

Topics: back pain, chiropractor treatments, conditions, hip pain, leg pain