Aloha everyone. I’m Dr. Tom from Kalani Total Health Center.
Today we’re talking about the most frequently asked questions for sciatica.
Let’s get started.
Should I see a medical doctor, a chiropractic doctor, or a physical therapist for sciatica?
The answer is yes, yes, and yes.
At Kalani Total Health Center, we are a multi-discipline integrated center, meaning we have health care providers from a broad spectrum. We all integrate our care for the health
and benefit of our patients.
So, all the above, although I would caution you to see experts in each of those fields. Not everyone is an expert at sciatica and spinal disorders, but we are. Choose your providers wisely.
What can I do at home to help my sciatica?
It really starts with the cause of your sciatica. If we didn’t go through a comprehensive physical examination, health history, any medical imaging, or special testing, we might not know what’s causing your sciatica.
In general terms, you can use contrast therapy, which is using ice and heat together. You can ice for 15 or 20 minutes, apply ice on the lower back, the pelvis, the hip, and gluteal regions. You can then heat the areas for another 15 or 20 minutes.
We can do some light stretching like foam rolling, over-the-counter anti-inflammatory, lots of water, rest, and decrease your activity. These are some very generic things we can do at home.
What’s the best treatment for sciatica?
There is no best treatment because the best treatment is really designed for the specific cause of your sciatica. There are many causes of sciatica. To understand the best treatment, you have to understand what is the actual cause of your sciatica.
Should I lay down or sleep in bed with sciatica? Should I see my side, my stomach, my back?
I would always err on the side of comfort and what will help you get deep sleep. We can use pillows between our legs, even if we are on our side we can use a pillow underneath our knees. Pillow-top mattresses will also play a role in your level of comfort, which is the most important issue when deciding how to sleep with sciatica.
How long does sciatica last?
While it lasts for different people, it can come and go. It can also be constant. The intensity and frequency are different for all different people because the causes of sciatica can be different for many people.
So there’s no clear answer, but it can come and go or can be constant. There can be some flare-ups.
Can stretching make sciatica worse?
Yes, stretching can cause flare-ups and make the issue worse, especially if you’re stretching the wrong muscles or using poor techniques.
Again, it comes back down to understanding the cause of your sciatic pain and developing a treatment plan from there.
What’s better for sciatica chiropractic or acupuncture?
Well, we already answered that so you know the answer is yes and yes. All of the above, depending on the cause of your sciatica
and the specific treatment plan.
What are some typical causes of flare-ups of sciatica?
Well, it depends.
If it’s an acute flare-up of a new injury like a slip and fall, or a flare-up of a chronic injury, it all comes back to the cause of your sciatica.
Can I go to the gym with sciatica?
Yes, but under certain circumstances.
If you have an acute condition of sciatica, no, we don’t want it to flare up. It’s already inflamed, it’s swollen, we don’t wanna make it worse.
If it’s a flare-up of a chronic sciatica condition, yes, gentle walking, stretching, or foam rolling, and getting into the pool or jacuzzi, are all great things that we can do.
It always comes back to the cause of your sciatica. Receiving a proper examination and diagnosis is critical. If this has been nagging at you and causing you to lose sleep or interfering with the activities of daily living, it’s time to go seek help from a professional like us at
Kalani Total Health Center.
I’m Dr. Tom from Kalani Total Health Center, your one-stop holistic health care shop.
Mahalo, I’ll see you soon.