Here at Kalani Total Health Center, we understand that sciatica is a pain that originates along your sciatic nerve. This nerve extends from the back of your pelvis down the back of your thigh. The sciatic nerve is the main nerve in your leg and the largest nerve in your entire body. Regardless of the cause, about 90% of people with sciatica will get better in just a few weeks.
How We Treat Sciatica Pain in Oxnard, CA
Consultation and Exam
When you are experiencing sciatica pain, our chiropractors will collaborate with you to determine the cause of the pain. The type of chiropractic therapy provided for sciatica depends on the cause of your particular case. A sciatica treatment plan may include several treatments ranging from spinal adjustments to hot and cold therapies.
Specific Chiropractic Care
Chiropractic adjustments realign your spine, allowing herniated discs to resume their healthy position, taking pressure off the sciatic nerve.
Massage Therapy and Soft Tissue Work
Massage therapy is a wonderful way to relieve sciatica pain. Massage induces deep muscles to relax and releases endorphins that function as natural pain killers.
This natural therapy works by relaxing tight muscles, improving blood circulation, regulating the nervous system, and releasing neurotransmitters to reduce pain. Acupuncture has been shown to be an effective treatment for sciatica without the need for prescription pain medications like NSAIDs and muscle relaxers.
Therapeutic exercise helps strengthen and mobilize tissues in the lower back, pelvis, abdomen, buttocks, and thighs, restoring pain and allowing for more unrestricted functional movement.
There are a variety of supplements that reduce inflammation and improve nerve health which serve to relieve sciatica.
Common Causes of Sciatica Pain
Herniated Lumbar Disc
Sciatic pain frequently results from a herniated disc in the lower back. Pressure on the sciatic nerve causes pain, burning, tingling, and numbness that radiates into the leg and sometimes into the foot.
Degenerative Disc Disease
Our spinal discs can begin to break down with age and stress. This causes a compression of the sciatic nerve resulting in pain and numbness that runs down the hip and leg.
Spinal stenosis and sciatica both involve the spinal column, vertebrae, and nerves. When the space between the vertebrae narrows, also called stenosis, the vertebrae can put pressure on the sciatic nerve causing pain and numbness down the leg.
Muscle Strain or Spasm
Muscle tension can impact the health of our nerves as well. Strains or spasms in the lower back muscles can trigger irritation, inflammation, pinching, or compression of the sciatic nerve.
Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction
If the sacroiliac joint becomes inflamed or is too tight or overused, the portion of the sciatic nerve that runs directly in front of the joint can be irritated. Sacroiliac joint dysfunction affects the sciatic nerve and has similar symptoms to sciatica.
Subluxation is when any joint becomes misaligned or stops moving correctly. Subluxation of the joints in the low back can irritate nerves that run down into the legs causing sciatica symptoms.
This condition involves spinal instability, which means vertebrae move more than they should. This hypermobility can result in pinching or irritation of the lumbar nerve root. You may feel pain, tingling, or numbness along your sciatic nerve when this occurs.
Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of sciatica do I have?
- Acute Sciatica – is a recent onset, 4-8 week duration of nerve pain which may be self-managed and may not require medical treatment.
- Chronic Sciatica – is a persistent nerve pain that lasts more than eight weeks and does not subside with self-management.
- Alternating Sciatica – is nerve pain that affects both legs alternately.
- Bilateral Sciatica – is nerve pain that occurs in both legs together.
Should I see a doctor or chiropractor for sciatica?
If you continue to have pain and problems with movement after a few days of self-care, or if your symptoms get worse rather than better, it’s time to see a chiropractor for sciatica treatment.
What can I do to relieve my sciatica pain at home?
We recommend starting with cold therapy for the first seven days to reduce inflammation. After that, switch to heat to increase blood flow to the area and speed up healing. Finally, keep moving; this is probably the most important thing you can do to relieve sciatica pain.
What causes sciatica flare-ups?
Sciatica pain is caused by irritation, inflammation, pinching, or compression of a nerve in the lower back.