The sciatic nerve runs from the lower spine to the sole of your foot. In fact, five nerves meet at the spine. Any compression on this nerve will result in pain at the site of the compression. But, because this nerve is so large, compression at the lower spine is likely to send pain down through the nerve, potentially causing pain in all or part of your leg.
Sciatic pain can be deliberating. As the pain gets worse it is normal to find it difficult to move around and undertake everyday tasks. The good news is that you are not alone. Approximately one in six Australians suffer from back pain. Many of these experience sciatica.
There are several things that you can do to reduce the pain as the tissue heals. However, before you start it is a good idea to visit a doctor. They can suggest the cause of the pain and the likelihood of whether it will heal by itself or not. In many cases, the best approach is to visit a reputable neurosurgeon. They will be able to tell you exactly what the issue is and the best treatment option. This can be as simple as rest and exercise or as complicated as surgery.
You may not feel like exercising when you have lower back pain and it’s radiating down your leg. However, failing to exercise is likely to mean a build-up of inflammation in your lower back which will make the issue worse.
Exercise can help as it will maintain spine health and aid mobility. You’ll find it reduces sciatic pain for a short while. However, you must undertake moderate exercise. The exercise you choose should not increase your pain levels.
Sciatic is generally a result of compression. That means you’re going to need to stretch your spine. Again, gentle is an important concept for this. Your doctor and your therapist will be able to suggest practical stretches. You should feel the muscles pulling but not any additional pain.
Hot & Cold
These are some of the most effective treatment steps for any condition. Cold packs reduce blood flow to an area and reduce inflammation. This reduces pressure on your sciatic nerve and reduces pain.
In contrast, hot compresses boost blood flow ensuring your body has the nutrients it needs to start the healing process. When used alternately you’ll find hot and cold treatments are effective at reducing pain and increasing mobility while helping your back to heal.
you’ve probably already been told how important posture is. When you have sciatica you’ll find it is even more important. Sciatic pain tends to get worse if you stay in the same position for anything longer than 20-30 minutes.
Try changing your position regularly and make sure your posture is correct in regards to your screen or whatever else you are doing. This will help to relieve stress on your spine.
Don’t forget, home management is fine but if you’re still feeling the pain two weeks after it starts, you need to see a doctor as quickly as possible.