Sciatica is a fairly common ailment, but not everyone is familiar with what it is or what causes it. For effective treatment and at-home management of the condition, it’s important to know your options and what to expect. Below are some frequently asked questions on the topic to get you started.
Common Concerns About Sciatica
What is it?
Sciatica describes an intense back pain that begins in the lower area and can extend down one or both legs, sometimes accompanied by numbness and tingling. The discomfort isn’t an illness — it’s a symptom of one. It’s caused by pressure on the sciatic nerve, the longest one in your body that runs down the spine and both of legs. It can become inflamed or aggravated by various illnesses, including a slipped disc, disc degeneration, and narrowing of the spinal canal.
What are my treatment options?
Treating the issue involves addressing your discomfort and determining the cause of it. At-home pain management options include over the counter pain relievers, light exercise and activity, and using hot or cold compresses. A physician may also suggest treatments such as chiropractic manipulation to address the underlying problem.
What happens if these solutions don’t work?
When your pain is severe and doesn’t improve with the above options, a chiropractor may recommend other treatments to correct your spinal condition. Options can range from physical or cognitive behavioral therapy to surgical solutions for especially distressing levels of discomfort. Certain surgeries can reduce the pressure on the sciatic nerve, such as correcting a damaged or misaligned disc through a discectomy or widening the spinal canal through a laminectomy.
Does it go away on its own?
Unfortunately, even though sciatic pain often goes away, that doesn’t mean it’s treated or healed. Many patients report an improvement or elimination of their pain levels after several weeks, but it’s common for flare-ups to occur. For lasting relief, you must address and correct the underlying cause of the problem.
For over 17 years, the team at Pure Balance in Manhattan, NY, has provided cutting-edge chiropractic and wellness care. Dr. Magwood, is a certified pediatric chiropractor who offers thorough, effective treatment for your entire family. Whether you have minor or chronic pain, he and his team will tailor a plan to address the root of the problem. Learn more about their solutions and techniques on the website. Call (212) 661-5656 to schedule an appointment about your sciatica today.