Sciatica refers to pain caused by a problem with the sciatic nerve which may or may not be in the lower back.  The sciatic nerve is a large nerve that runs from the lower back down the back of each leg. When something injures or puts pressure on the sciatic nerve, it can cause pain in the lower back that spreads to the hip, buttocks, and leg.  In practice, it is my experience that if the patient has pain in their leg or buttock region at all they think they have sciatica.

What causes Sciatica?

Sciatica is caused by a one of a few things.  It could be from pinching of the sciatic nerve from the piriformis muscle, disc herniation, spinal stenosis or other mechanism of injury.  It is always important to be assessed by a chiropractor to identify and prescribe solutions for your particular case.

How do I relieve Sciatica pain?

Here’s a great stretch to get you started on the right path:  knee to opposite shoulder

This simple stretch helps relieve sciatica pain by loosening your gluteal and piriformis muscles, which can become inflamed and press against the sciatic nerve.

How to stretch the sciatic nerve compressor muscles:  Lie on your back with your legs extended and your feet flexed upward. Bend your right leg and clasp your hands around the knee

What is the best treatment for Sciatica?

The best treatment for sciatica depends on the mechanism of injury.  You need to find where the sciatic nerve is being irritated.  If your sciatic nerve is severely irritated then you will likely find yourself in your chiropractors office same day.  If not, you may be trying yoga, stretches or other self care modalities.  Chiropractic care has been shown to be cheaper for the patient in the long run than all other sciatic nerve treatment options.  Not only is it the least expensive, but it could very well be the most safe and effective.

How long does it take for Sciatica to go away?

Sciatica will go away  in the vast majority of cases within 6 weeks.  If you seek a professional chiropractor it will most likely be much faster.  Sometimes sciatica can resolve on it’s own, but will come back in most cases.