Back pain is a typical problem for many people. In fact, sciatica affects about 80% of adults at some point in their lifetime. Back pain comes from a variety of causes including compression, inflammation, and irritation of the nerves that lead to your legs and feet. The result can be unbearable lower back pain or shooting leg pains down one or both legs.
The non-surgical treatment of sciatica is designed to help you find relief and get back on track with life as quickly as possible without surgery.
Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese practice that has been proven to be effective for relieving sciatica pain. This ancient technique uses the flow of energy to alleviate pain in specific pathways, including Sciatica relief. Acupuncture was approved by the FDA and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
If you have just started experiencing pain from Sciatica, there are a few things that can help alleviate the discomfort. For severe cases, heat or ice packs (or both) should be applied for 20 minutes and repeated every two hours until the pain subsides.
Massage therapy has been shown to relieve symptoms associated with Sciatica including numbness, tingling, or burning sensations in legs or feet as well as low-back pain radiating into buttocks and thighs. This therapy relaxes tight muscles and releases pain-fighting endorphins, making it the perfect remedy for Sciatica.
In general, the goals of physical therapy are to decrease pain and increase function. A maintenance program is also given on a preventative basis so that people can lead more functional lives without having further issues with their injuries or conditions.
A physical therapy program for back pain usually has two components: passive exercises like heat or ice to reduce the patient’s pain by a manageable level, and active exercise which is designed specifically to strengthen the muscles around your spine.
These exercises and sessions combined with the targeted core strengthening exercise designed to strengthen your spine provide some relief.
An epidural steroid injection administered directly to the painful area around the sciatic nerve can reduce inflammation and provide quick relief. However, this relief is usually only temporary – lasting from one week up to a full year before Sciatica returns. In an effort not to be caught off guard when it does come back, sufferers of Sciatica may try starting a conditioning or exercise program during their period of reduced pain caused by these injections.
Chiropractors can provide spinal adjustments for sciatica that free the spine’s restricted movement, reduce nerve irritability responsible for inflammation and other symptoms related to Sciatica. Osteopathic physicians also offer manual manipulation which helps restore misaligned vertebrae to their proper position.
These non-invasive therapies work well with most people who suffer from sciatica as they do not involve invasive procedures like surgery which could lead to complications down the road if done incorrectly or too soon after an injury has occurred.