Sciatica is a condition caused by irritation or compression of the sciatic nerve. The pain radiates along its path, and it can branch from the lower back through the hips and buttock to each leg. Sciatica is also marked by sharp pain, numbness, and weakness along the nerve’s path.
The most common reason why the sciatic nerve can be compressed, it’s due to a herniated disk, bone spur on the spine, or spinal stenosis. At first, the doctor might recommend you to apply ice or cold packs to reduce the swelling and then minimize the pain, or even medication. However, there are also other effective methods to treat sciatica that don’t involve drugs. At Taylor Rehabilitation & Wellness Center, we’ve been treating people with sciatica for several years in Chicago.
At first, it’s best to take a conservative and non-surgical approach to treat sciatica, some of the things the doctor may suggest are:
- Physical Therapy: Stretching exercises to improve the flexibility of tight muscles can decrease sciatic pain. The therapist might even suggest doing some low impact exercises like walking and swimming and other types of strengthening the muscles of your abdomen, legs, and back.
- Spinal Manipulation: A chiropractor does this by adjusting the spinal structure. A combination of massage and applying controlled force to the spinal joints causing the problem can help reduce the inflammation and improve nerve function.
- Spinal Decompression: With the use of a device, negative pressure is applied within the spinal disc to allow nutrients, oxygen, and blood to get sucked back into the disc.
- Acupuncture: These needles are lightly inserted in the skin, and alternatively, the acupuncturist may also use manual pressure.
When you visit the Taylor Rehabilitation & Wellness Center, one of the doctors will perform a thorough examination to find what is causing your sciatic pain, and after the diagnose, he will inform you of what are the best treatments to follow for your case. If needed, aside from a physical exam, he might want to perform some imaging exams.