Sciatica is a general term that is used to describe pain associated with the sciatic nerve, typically in the lower back, hip, buttock and outside of the leg. It can affect either the right side or the left side, and although in the majority of cases sciatica pain affects only one side of the body, it is possible to occur on both sides. Thankfully, there are many effective treatments for sciatica that can relieve pain and release pressure from the sciatic nerve.
What is the best treatment for sciatica?
The best treatment for sciatica depends on its underlying cause, its severity and how well the patient responds to treatment. Different treatments may work better for different patients. In order to receive the treatment best suited for your individual situation, it is vital to undergo a professional medical evaluation. After a sciatica specialist diagnoses the root cause, treatment may begin. Your sciatica specialist may use any of the following treatments:
How long will sciatica take to heal?
The length of time it takes sciatica to heal depends on its cause, its severity and the overall health of the patient. Sciatica can be either acute or chronic. An acute episode of sciatica can cause symptoms for one or two weeks, typically resolving on its own in a few weeks. Numbness in the affected area is normal after the pain has subsided. Some people may also experience sciatic episodes multiple times throughout the year. In other cases, the pain can be persistent and last for months, or even years. Most cases of sciatica respond well to treatment, with higher success rates the early it is treated.
Is walking good for sciatic nerve pain?
Yes, walking is a good form of relief for sciatic nerve pain. Because regular walking promotes the release of pain-fighting endorphins while also reducing inflammation, walking is a very effective approach for relieving sciatic pain. However, walking with a poor posture may irritate sciatica symptoms. Here are a few tips to help you improve your walking posture:
Shorten your stride to protect your sciatic nerve — Incorrect walking posture can compress the lumbar discs, causing irritation and pressure on the sciatic nerve. In general, to avoid sciatica pain, one must be aware of the initial contact of the foot, length of the stride, and walking speed.
To correct your step:
- Don’t reach with your toes. Land between your midfoot and heel, then smoothly roll onto your toes and gently push off into the next stride.
- Slow down. A slower pace typically means shorter steps. It should be easy to hold a conversation while walking.
Engage your abdominal muscles to support your spine — Actively engaging your core muscles protects the sciatic nerve roots by minimizing the pressure that is exerted on the spine.
Here’s how to use your abdominal muscles correctly:
- Stand upright. Hold your head and shoulders tall and focus on a distant
- Focus on your breathing. Rhythmic breathing is one of the easiest ways to keep the mind focused and alert while walking.
- Tuck in your stomach. Pull your stomach slightly toward your body for the duration of your walk, but be sure it does not cause discomfort.
Can sciatica be cured?
The vast majority of sciatica cases (over 90%) are successfully resolved with conservative, non-invasive treatments. In more severe or chronic cases that do not respond well to conventional treatments, more interventional procedures may be required.
If you have pain that starts in your lower back or buttocks and shoots down one of your legs, you may have sciatica. It is important to have your symptoms diagnosed by a medical professional as soon as possible. Come to Back Pain & Joint Center of Texas, where our sciatica specialists can help you live a pain-free life. Call us today to book an appointment. We serve patients from Conroe TX, Montgomery TX, Panorama Village TX, Willis TX, The Woodlands TX, and Cleveland TX. Looking forward to serve you!