06 May 10 Tips to Relieve Sciatic Nerve Pain
What Is Sciatica?
Many people in today’s society deal with sciatic nerve pain on a daily basis. Four out of ten people will experience sciatica in their lifetime. This form of nerve pain causes numbness and tingling within the body and irritates the nerve roots that make their way to the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve can be found in the spinal cord of the lower back.
Symptoms of Sciatic Nerve Pain
There are many different symptoms that are associated with sciatica. Some of these symptoms are the same as other illnesses and conditions which makes the diagnosis of this condition somewhat difficult.
People who experience sciatic nerve pain may experience mild or severe symptoms. Individuals who suffer from this type of nerve pain can experience pain in different areas of the body, including the legs and buttock. Other symptoms include a pinching or burning sensation that people experience in their legs and feet, difficulty with range of motion, constant pain of the affected areas and shooting pain that continuously travels up or down the leg, making standing up difficult.
Types of Sciatic Nerve Pain
There are three different types of pain in the nerves that are associated with sciatica, including sciatica from the L4, L5 and S1 nerve root.
L4 Nerve Root
People who experience pain in the nerves from the L4 nerve root may experience numbness or pain in the lower leg and foot and weakness.
L5 Nerve Root
Pain from this nerve root includes pain within the big toe. Pain from the L5 nerve root can result in pain within the ankle, commonly referred to as foot drop. Other symptoms include numbness or pain at the top of the foot.
S1 Nerve Root
The S1 nerve root is located at the bottom of the spine. Pain from this nerve root includes numbness or pain on the outside of the foot, making it difficult to walk or keep your balance.
Causes of Pain in the Nerves Due to Sciatica
There are many different back problems and conditions that can lead to pain within the nerves, including a lumbar herniated disk, lumber degenerative disc disease, arthritis within the spine, spondylolisthesis, osteophytes and spinal stenosis. As time progresses, these conditions can worsen, causing the symptoms of sciatica more severe.
10 Tips to Relieve Sciatic Nerve Pain
1. Get a Massage
Getting a massage can loosen the muscles within the buttocks and back of the legs to reduce or eliminate pain and inflammation. When you get a massage, you aid with blood circulation which eases the tension of the muscles.
2. Use the Hot and Cold Switch
First, you need to decrease inflammation by applying a cold compress to the affected areas. Next, you need to apply heat to the affected areas immediately after removing the cold compress to promote the flow of blood and soothe tension within the muscles.
3. Pain Medication
Over-the-counter medication can be an effective form of pain relief from pain in the nerves caused by sciatica. This type of medication focuses on the relief of pain from muscle tension and inflammation. Popular over-the-counter medications that will help in this situation include Ibuprofen and Aspirin.
Acupuncture is a great way to not only relieve stress, but relieve pain due to sciatica. Acupuncture involves the use of tiny needles. These small needles are inserted in specific pressure points to relieve pressure and inflammation.
5. Prescription Medication
Prescription medications are another option for pain relief in the nerves caused by sciatica. Your physician can prescribe medications for you to help you cope with the symptoms of this condition.
People who experience sciatica often experience muscle tension. Yoga and other forms of exercising and stretching can loosen your muscles and help you relax.
7. Creams and Ointments
Creams and ointments are a great alternative for people who are not fond of over-the-counter medications or prescribed medications. Apply the cream or ointment on the affected areas for pain relief.
8. Back Support
People who have occupations that require them to sit for long periods of time are prime candidates for developing sciatica. Purchasing a desk chair with sturdy support for your back can provide the relief you need from inflammation and tension.
9. Physical Therapy
Physical therapy promotes many different things, including flexibility and range of motion. Both of these things in addition to massages can provide ultimate relief from sciatic pain.
Make yourself at home in a warm bath, jacuzzi or visit a spa. When your body is immersed in heat, you will be surprised at how relaxed you feel and how your body slowly unwinds, releases tension and begins to loosen up.