Help for sciatica pain is certainly relevant. With about 20% of folk having it at least once in a lifetime, and 5% of people having an attack of sciatica every year, sciatica cures abound. None work all the time.
For the purist:
But internet users like to google "sciatica pain" so sciatica pain it is. The consumer is always right!
There are two principle causes of sciatica:
The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the body; it's as thick as your finger and runs from the lower back to the foot.
Before thinking about how to cure sciatica you should understand first what it is, otherwise, if you don't do the right exercises, the miserable affliction will start all over again next week.
There are other rare sources such as tumors, but they really are like hen's teeth. If you have loss of bladder control, weight loss, cancer elsewhere, well, yes, the other causes of sciatica leg pain must be considered.
The sciatic nerve is made up primarily of three nerve roots located at the very bottom of the spine: primarily the so called lumbar 4, lumbar 5 and sacral 1 roots. They travel down the spine in what is called the horse's tail and then escape via a foramen.
This foramen, it's full name is an inter vertebral foramen, is a narrow tunnel between the vertebrae which enables the nerve root to escape from the spinal canal on it's way to the leg.
On each side of the spine a "intervertebral foramen" or IVF, or just "foramen" is located at each spinal level, strategically and vulnerably placed right between a facet joint and the disc joint. Both can be causes of sciatica by interfering with the nerve roots.
Both the facets and the vertebral end plates are made of hyaline cartilage, one of the tissues in the body that has no blood supply. They are supplied with nutrients and oxygen, and waste products removed, by fluid in and around the joints. HYALINE CARTILAGE ... If either the disc of the facet joints are fixated, the synovial fluids in the joints are not adequately refreshed causing a build up of waste products. This toxic soup of wastes is now known to be one of the causes of sciatica.
A bulging or slipped disc can physically press on the nerve root
causing sciatica symptoms - pain, tingling, numbness and weakness in the
leg. Very occasionally it can also cause bladder problems.
SLIPPED DISC SYMPTOMS Case File ...
A chronically subluxated facet joint is starved of oxygen and
nutrients. Experiments on white mice show that degeneration of the
hyaline cartilage (scientists call it Immobilisation Arthritis) sets in
within 13 hours. Gradually the shape of the facet changes, becoming
large and flattened and allowing the vertebra to subluxate forwards
(called an "antero-lysthesis") which can pinch the nerve root located
just forward of the facet. Soft tissue cysts complicate the issue.
One's first thought should be of prevention before sciatica cures. From Chiropractic Tips you can get some very basic lumbar exercises. We all sit too much, our core muscles become weak and a few simple exercises done faithfully every day will do wonders for sciatica back pain treatment. Think Immobilisation arthritis prevention and sciatica stretches before sciatica nerve treatment!
How to cure sciatica? Frankly, a "cure" doesn't exist. Once you've had a bad attack of sciatica, no matter what help for sciatic pain you seek, it will remain a vulnerable part of your body. Exercise, exercise, exercise... is your best bet. And accept that lifting pianos and the like is not for you.
Your chiropractor will start with a posture examination. Do you have the
sign of Pisa - look like a question mark? Do you have a short leg, what is known in Chiropractic
jargon as a Leg Length Inequality? Effective help for sciatic pain is dependent on a proper diagnosis of the level.
Next your chiropractor will test your ranges of motion. Does bending forwards hurt? Most important, does bending increase the pain or cause a tight feeling in the leg? If so, you certainly need help for sciatica pain. If bending backwards, or to the side causes pain to radiate down your leg then you may have a condition called Lumbar stenosis. It too responds well usually to Chiropractic. Here one of our monthly newsletters. Have you signed up yet? CHIROPRACTIC HELP Lumbar Stenosis ...
Next your Chiropractor will be looking for "hard neurological signs". Can you stand on your heel, raising your big toe, can you go up and down several times on your toes, taking your full weight on one foot? Then the reflexes and tests for numbness or increased sensation in the skin. It's all quite involved and gives precise information as to which nerve root is affected. Sometimes it can be more than one level causing considerable scratching of the head! That's where a MR scan is so useful.
Your Chiropractor will do a series of orthopaedic tests to help in making a diagnosis before starting help for sciatic pain. The purpose of these tests is to stress the affected tissue, and they may cause some pain, and occasionally "after pain". The artful examination looks to make a diagnosis without actually aggravating the condition. For example the Slump test places increasing sciatic nerve stretches to determine whether the nerve is just irritated, or actually pinched. SLUMP TEST FOR SCIATICA ...
Motion palpation, a technique developed by Belgian chiropractor Henri Gillet, is an important part of the chiropractic examination.
Your chiropractor will carefully examine your spine and pelvis looking for fixated joints. It's a difficult procedure; more of an art than a science perhaps, and requires a long time to perfect. After nearly thirty five years I'm still learning.
It's an absolutely vital part of my protocol, because my sciatica back pain treatment is based on these motion palpation findings.
Why is that, you may well ask? Let's consider the lumbo sacral disc at the base of the spine. Traditionally, it's considered this bottom most joint will pinch the first sacral nerve root. That's because the herniation is usually central.
However if the disc extrudes laterally into the foramen, then it will pinch the nerve root above, the fifth lumbar, and confuse the examining doctor; the pain will radiate to the big toe area.
If you can't raise your big toe then he or she is likely to think it's not the bottom most disc, but one higher.
If he's luckily enough to have a scan then all is revealed. However this is not normally the case; MRIs are very expensive. It's motion palpation that helps your chiropractor decide which level he should be adjusting. Adjust the wrong vertebra and it just won't get better.
Help for sciatica pain
Here is where there is considerable variation depending on your condition, and your Chiropractor's preferred treatment protocol. One chiropractor might prefer using a Thompson drop treatment (my first choice), another frank manipulation, an activator, SOT pelvic blocks, McManus traction... all of these have their place, one perhaps more suited to your condition that another.
Lower back exercises are vital to properly rehabilitate the injured joint, and strengthen the core muscles; they also help prevent you from joining that group of five percent who will have an episode every year and eventually progress to surgery. Your chiropractor can provide help for sciatica pain, but you have to help yourself too.
In all honesty, I cannot guarantee it and, in fact, I think it's unlikely that lower back exercises can fix a sciatica. But they will do wonders to prevent the next bout of pain once your chiropractor has reduced the pressure on the nerve. There's no harm in trying them to see if you can get relief, though; perhaps for a maximum of a week or two.
Then, say to yourself, in all honesty, is this improving? If not, well, you know what to do. It's time to get help for sciatica pain.
Rule of thumb:
If you are having lateral thigh pain, then Noble's test helps to exclude an ilio tibial band syndrome.
In short, exercise is more for preventing the next episode than curing you of this one. I am particularly in doubt about the merits of sciatica stretches; if the nerve is tethered and you stretch it, further damage is likely.
ARE YOU WRITING ON A CELLPHONE? STOP RIGHT NOW BECAUSE I DON'T ANSWER NOT SO SMART CELLPHONE GRAMMAR.
I receive many questions about Chiropractic. It might be help with a spinal condition, but it might also be from a person who can't walk after a hip operation, or some such thing.
I will do that by answering your questions personally, but it will be converted to a Web Page so others can benefit from your questions. Omit your name if you like.
However, do understand that, in the main, I'm going to be directing you, should it be pertinent, to a Chiropractor in your neck of the woods. I'll respond to all reasonable inquiries, but please be specific, and give as much detail as you can.
Stop! Are you about to write on a not so smartphone? Don't. The chances are good you are wasting your time and won't get a reply.
Google has taken a very strong stand against webpages with poor grammar. Please don't use capitals, dots, hyphens and brackets. Don't write from your smartphone because I simply don't have the time to correct your grammar, and won't answer.
There is no charge for this service, however if you find my answer useful, you might like to consider purchasing my latest book, Stones in my Clog. Gems, both funny and healthful, from the life and work of a Chiropractor. It's only $2.99. http://www.bernard-preston.com/Stones-in-my-Clog.html
Pose Me A Question! Pretty please, in decent grammar and spelling.
I will never give or sell your email address to anyone.
Do understand that lower back pain is extremely complex, so I can only give general guidelines. There's no substitute for a careful thorough chiropractic examination.
Click below to see contributions from other visitors.
If you find my answer useful, please ask friends to grade it.
Pinch in low left back, down left leg
A spine doctor ordered x-ray and MRI in October, found Spondy and a couple discs with minor protrusion. Due to significant pain, family sent me to a chiropractor …
Pain in the bum
Pain in the bum. Dear Sir. I have pain in the buttocks which radiates at back from waist over hips and into the back of thighs and also into feet; …
Lower Back Pain
I woke up last night in a lot of pain. It is in the lower part of my back on the right side. I cannot sit, stand, nothing without being in pain. I took …
Severe lower back pain with Sciatica going down right leg
Hello, I am a 54 year old female with lower back issues. My current problem first started with lower back pain that was generalized to the middle first, …
Severe pain in lower left leg
Hi, I’m currently suffering from Piriformis Syndrome on my left side. For over 5 years I’ve been experiencing shooting/stabbing pain in one spot in my …
Right leg pain after first time at a chiropractor Not rated yet
Just had my very first chiropractor appointment and now I have pain shooting down my right leg; I now can’t walk on it. I have added ice, tried heat and …
No Back Pain. 25 yr old sciatica Not rated yet
I believe my issue is a complicated one. So I will try and be as factual as possible. Medical History: Over a year a go I managed a slight perforated …
is is a sciatic problem? Not rated yet
Muscle weakness, tingling, burning. Had a surgery for my broken femur sometime ago. About a year now. My femur has not healed and I am passing through …
Extreme lower back pain and legs giving out Not rated yet
I woke up Tuesday morning and couldn't get out of bed; the pain was like none I've ever experienced before. I called the chiropractor and got in as …
dull ache down outside of right calf Not rated yet
this is worse when i have been standing in one spot.i do a lot of walking and it isnt too bad- but at home even standing preparing veg sets it off. i stand …
Chronic sciatica with no low back pain Not rated yet
Hi, for about a year now I have had severe pain in my right leg. When it started out I was able to take one Aleve tablet and that would last me for about …
Pain in calf is more severe after treatment Not rated yet
sir or madam, I went for a chiropratic manipulation at my local for four days and the pain in my foot has become more severe than after a kind of pressure …
Leg pain hurts more than when I started Not rated yet
I have a pinched nerve coming from my lower back and radiating pain down my leg. I started to see a chiropractor last week and he asked me to come in every …
lower back pain causing legs to give out Not rated yet
Lower back pain causing legs to give out warrants further examination. I went to the chiropractor and he said my system keeps turning off and I end …
Achy pain in hip, back, and down legs Not rated yet
Hi Doctor, I am a college runner, and I have this toothachy pain going from my butt, down my ilio tibial band, and to my ankle. It is never shooting …
Herniated discs and can't stand straight up Not rated yet
Herniated discs and can't stand straight up is known as an antalgia; leaning away from or sometimes towards the side of pain. I was diagnosed with a …
Right Side Feels Funny All The Time Not rated yet
Hello. About seven years ago a car seat belt got wrapped around my ankle causing me to fall out of the car while I was trying to get out. When I fell my …
Pain that moves through my left leg Not rated yet
Pain that moves through my left leg after childbirth is not uncommon but it should resolve within a few weeks of itself. If not, careful examination is …
Chronic pain with tingling and numbing left side Not rated yet
Chronic pain with tingling and numbing left side. Two years ago in January 2014, severe groin pain occurred after going up and down steps to the basement …
lower back pain when standing Not rated yet
Lower back pain when standing While walking and standing or doing any thing repetitiously while on my feet depending on the activity within 5-15 minutes …
Lower back pain with shooting pain down the entire leg Not rated yet
Hi there, thank you for taking my question. Firstly, I'm a 34 year old male in great shape and very active. I have a desk job so during the week I'm …
lower back, outer hip and leg pain. Not rated yet
Hello, I have had lower back problems which have been helped by a Kiné but he couldn't help the pains in my outer hips that go down my leg (not continuously …
anterior tibialis muscle is numb Not rated yet
1st Symptom was numbness of the anterior tibialis muscle on my right leg on 7-3-2015. Out of the country for 10 days. 1st treatment 7-27-2015. Osteopath …
I have a problem of lower back pain. Not rated yet
Actually sir, I fell down around 5/6 years ago during my training. At that time I did not care it more. I cure it myself by massage with oil and hot water. …
Sciatica pain in both sides Not rated yet
Sciatica pain began at age sixteen from lower back injury. Parents did not believe in Chiropractic. After marriage and during first pregnancy got first …
Pain in lower back goes down my leg into knee Not rated yet
Pain in lower back goes down my leg into knee First off, I am a 29 yr old female; so many people tell me I am too young to have back pain, I need to …
sharp radiating pain from glutes to ankle; tired back Not rated yet
So much tightness on my hamstrings. I cannot stretch my left leg to stretch my hamstrings. I feel so much pain on my low back and sciatic nerve when I …
Lower back pain along with right leg stiffening and both feet numbing Not rated yet
About 4 years ago I was walking and took a step off of a curb. Without stumbling or tripping I lost feeling from the waist down, although I could still …
30 year old male diagnosed with a prolapsed disc Not rated yet
I have an agonising pain in my left thigh, running down the back of my leg, into my calf and a burning sensation in my toes for about a month now. Then …
Pain in back of leg and buttock. Not rated yet
I have had several bouts of moderate to severe pain in the buttocks and the back of the thigh of my left leg. The current manifestation differs somewhat …
Maignes Syndrome Not rated yet
I am a 55 year old female. I have always been physically active and very rarely poorly. I was an FA referee and worked out at least three times a week …
Hip, outer thigh & outer side of foot, along with two small toes, are numb Not rated yet
Started about 3 years ago. I have pain in my left hip that goes down the outer side of my left thigh, ends above knee. The outer edge of my left foot, …
Lumbar pain down left leg Not rated yet
Lumbar pain down left leg Pain to the left of lumbar, and down left leg for about 3 weeks now, when reached over my desk chair. It is sciatica, can …
Pain and tingling in R leg thigh calf and foot Not rated yet
Pain and tingling in R leg thigh calf and foot Hi I injured my back Dec. of 2000. I have 3 herniated disc in my lower back,2 herniated disc in my neck. …
low back pain while twisting & turning in bed Not rated yet
low back pain while twisting & turning in bed Dear Dr. I had a disc prolapse 2 weeks back and though the pain in the back and leg had decreased considerably, …
Other relevant useful pages @ Help for sciatica pain ...
Permanent sciatic cures don't exist but to help prevent arthritis in the lower back, think:
More interesting questions from readers