Questions To Answer Before Considering Sciatica Surgery
Sciatica is the type of pain that originates in your lower back and typically radiates down one or both of your legs. It results from the inflammation of the sciatic nerve in your lower back. The medical term for sciatica is lumbar radiculopathy: pinching of a nerve as it exits the spine.
Surgery is one of the treatment options for sciatica, but it’s not for everyone. Below are some important questions to consider before making your decision, addressed by orthopaedic surgeon Brian Neuman.
Take Charge Of Stress
No, the pain isn’t “all in your head,” but your emotions can play a role. Stress causes your muscles to tense up and also makes the pain seem worse. Biofeedback, which shows you how your thinking and behavior affects your breathing and heart rate, might offer some relief. You could also try cognitive behavioral therapy. You’ll work with a mental health expert who will help you change your behaviors and thoughts.
Which Chair Helps To Relief From Sciatica Pain
We all go through the chairs in our daily life. In offices or our homes, we use chairs frequently. Selecting the best chair for your everyday use is not a Cup of tea nor a piece of cake. Its always challenging when you are struggling with the sciatica nerve pain.
So, we will help you select the most suitable chair for sciatica pain. We have compiled a list of features to keep in mind when you are fronting with that pain and want to shop the ergonomic chair for sciatica pain relief.
- The chair must guarantee your comfort, especially for the gamers or long-time computer users.
- The chair should be providing lumbar support to regulate the spinal canal and vertebras on their adjustable positions. Additionally, it must support your spine.
- The chair for the sciatica pain should assemble with full ergonomic features. The chair ought to be fully customizable to fit the users body and needs. It must not be limited to a few positions for the sciatica patients as it will result in stress in the joints of the user.
- It would be surplus if it is covered with breathable mesh. The best reclining chairs should have the ability to improve your blood circulation and weight distribution. Weight loss is also such an important factor to get relief from chronic back pain.
- It must allow the user to adjust the seat height, the seat depth and the armrests. In addition to this, the chair must come in multiple colors. It should be attractive and look stylish to improve the mood of the user.
Also Check: How To Use Ginger For Knee Pain
Years Of Back Pain Gone In Just Days
Jerry Talisman had suffered from chronic back pain on and off for over 50 years. Like most people, he had tried it all chiropractors, physical therapy, he even overdosed on tylenol but nothing gave him lasting relief until he discovered muscle balance therapy.
Unlike most treatments which only deliver temporary relief, if any at all, muscle balance therapy delivers lasting relief to 8 out of 10 people who use it because it addresses the underlying cause of the pain, not just the symptoms.
If you suffer from any type of back pain, neck pain or sciatica, I urge you to learn more about this breakthrough new treatment.
Best Sitting Positions For Sciatica
In addition to getting up more frequently to move around, try mixing in some different positions to figure out what the best sitting position is for YOUR body to relieve your sciatica pain. We’ll share some ideas on how to sit with sciatica below, which you may use to get some short-term relief as you keep working towards addressing the root cause of your pain for long-term results.
Don’t Miss: Can A High Fiber Diet Cause Stomach Pain
How Much Of An Investment Do I Need To Make
The average price for a good-quality foam mattress starts around $800, with other mattress types or more sophisticated models costing up to $2,000 or more. Additional features such as cooling technology tend to be reflected in the price tag, so the budget of your mattress will depend on what features are important to you.
You May Like: Does Neck Pain Give You Headaches
How Can I Tell If Pain In My Hip Is A Hip Issue Or Sciatica
Hip problems, such as arthritis in the hip, usually cause groin pain, pain when you put weight on your leg, or when the leg is moved around.
If your pain starts in the back and moves or radiates towards the hip or down the leg and you have numbness, tingling or weakness in the leg, sciatica is the most likely cause.
Don’t Miss: How Long Does Knee Pain Last After A Fall
How Long Does It Take For Sciatica To Go Away
Sciatica can be either acute or chronic. An acute episode usually resolves itself within a few weeks. Some people experience several severe bouts of sciatica each year. Chronic sciatica is life long, and you can experience pain regularly, although the pain usually is milder than in an acute episode. Chronic sciatica doesnt respond well to treatment. Lifestyle changes, such as exercising daily, practicing yoga, and losing weight can help to reduce discomfort from chronic sciatica. Surgery is a last resort option if no other treatments provide enough relief, and the pain and discomfort interfere with your daily activities.
Stretch The Inner Thigh And Short Adductors
- Place the soles of your feet together in front of your pelvis when sitting on the ground.
- On the opposite hands, hold the ankles .
- Gently press forward with your feet, aiming to make contact with the ground. Stop just until you feel any discomfort, which means if you feel pain, back up an inch or two and stay there.
- Hold for 30 seconds, then release and flutter your legs in that position for another 30 seconds .
If you want to go for a longer stretch? Bend your body forward while holding your back straight or push your knees down with your elbows.
Recommended Reading: Can Sciatica Cause Jaw Pain
Minimally Invasive And Non
Sciatica rarely requires surgical intervention, but if it has begun to affect your bladder or bowels, or if youre experiencing severe pain or weakness, you may need surgery. In addition, herniated discs are one of the conditions that may not resolve with conservative treatments. Dr. Shah diagnoses the root cause of your sciatica and discusses all your treatment options in detail so you can make an informed decision.;
If your sciatica is caused by lumbar spinal stenosis, Dr. Shah utilizes minimally invasive procedures such as lumbar decompression procedure by Vertos Medical, or Vertiflex Interspinous spacers to help decompress the spine without surgery. available.;
Dont Tolerate Sciatica Pain
Whatever is causing your sciatica, dont assume you have to live with it. If its interfering with your quality of sleep , talk with your healthcare provider about solutions, including a referral for physical therapy.
Even just a few sessions with a physical therapist can be helpful for many people, Sieberth says. Your therapist can help you figure out which sleeping positions and activities are best for you. Sciatica is such an individual condition, so theres no one-size-fits-all solution.
With the right medical treatment, you can get relief from sciatica pain and head off to dreamland again.;
Read Also: Can Vitamin D Deficiency Cause Nerve Pain
Use Of Exercises To Relieve Buttock Pains
You can use exercises to treat buttock pains. Such exercises must be simple, and the performance has to be gentle.
The use of exercises is effective to relieve buttock pains where the cause of the pain is physical. Exercises may not achieve much result if the pain has an underlying medical attachment.
Below are some simple exercises that can relieve buttock pains:
This will open the hips and relieve buttock pain caused by sciatica.
Lie on a mat and bend your knees, keeping your feet flat.
- Bring one ankle to rest on the opposite knee by crossing a leg over the top of the other.
- Hold the legs, pulling the bent-knee leg towards your chest.
- Keep the position for some seconds and feel the slight stretch on your buttocks.
- Disengage and relax for a few seconds, then repeat for the other side.
This exercise is good for the buttocks and the outer thighs.
- Lie on the mat with your side keeping the right leg on top of the left.
- Position your left hand to support your head with the elbow on the floor.
- Slowly raise your right leg keeping your knee straight.
- Maintain this position for 5 seconds.
- Bring down the leg slowly and relax for a few seconds. Do this again 8 to 10 times.
- Repeat for the other leg.
Bird Dog Stretch
This exercise is good for the buttocks and the lower back.
Stretch And Build Muscles To Relieve Physical Stresses
Exercises that include stretching and strengthening can help relieve stress in your lower back. Exercise also promotes healing of soft tissues, improves the functioning of the nervous system, and may decrease your sensitivity to pain.1 Sciatica exercises include techniques that help relieve pressure on the sciatic nerve roots and build strength in the lower spine, abdomen, and legs.
Using infrared or heat therapy before an exercise helps warm up and loosen stiffness in the tissues. You can use an ice pack after the exercise to treat any pain or soreness. Simple stretches can be done at home or at your office when you have recurrent or flaring sciatica symptoms. Always exercise within tolerable limits and start with 2 to 3 repetitions, slowly moving up to 5.
In some preparations, more than one drug may be combined together. While using topical medication, avoid using a heat patch3 or ice pack over the area at the same time. Combining both therapies may reduce and/or alter the effects of topical pain medications.3
Read Also: Is Carpal Tunnel Affected By Weather
Get Chiropractic Spinal Adjustments
This can be an expensive solution if you arent covered, but it is one that can work nonetheless. Most chiropractors are very experienced and knowledgeable when it comes to sciatica nerve pain and should be able to terminate your pain quite easily. Whether this will last over a long period of time is another question those in milder stages of sciatica should notice the strongest benefits. Its important that you know exactly what kind of sciatica youre experience and to what degree youre experiencing it at as well. This is crucial information that a chiropractor will need to be aware of to best handle your situation.
Heat Things Up Or Cool Them Down
Hot and cold may be opposites, but both can help keep you comfortable. Cold treatment is usually best for an injury that just happened. After about 72 hours, doctors usually suggest switching to heat. Use an ice pack that’s wrapped in a towel or try a heating pad for about 15-20 minutes at a time. Be careful not to burn your skin.Â;
Also Check: Can Sciatic Nerve Cause Back Pain
How Is Sciatica Diagnosed
First, your healthcare provider will review your medical history. Next, theyll ask about your symptoms.
During your physical exam, you will be asked to walk so your healthcare provider can see how your spine carries your weight. You may be asked to walk on your toes and heels to check the strength of your calf muscles. Your provider may also do a straight leg raise test. For this test, youll lie on your back with your legs straight. Your provider will slowly raise each leg and note the point at which your pain begins. This test helps pinpoint the affected nerves and determines if there is a problem with one of your disks. You will also be asked to do other stretches and motions to pinpoint pain and check muscle flexibility and strength.
Depending on what your healthcare provider discovers during your physical exam, imaging and other tests might be done. These may include:
- Spinal X-rays to look for spinal fractures, disk problems, infections, tumors and bone spurs.
- Magnetic resonance imaging or computed tomography scans to see detailed images of bone and soft tissues of the back. An MRI can show pressure on a nerve, disk herniation and any arthritic condition that might be pressing on a nerve. MRIs are usually ordered to confirm the diagnosis of sciatica.
- Nerve conduction velocity studies/electromyography to examine how well electrical impulses travel through the sciatic nerve and the response of muscles.
- Myelogram to determine if a vertebrae or disk is causing the pain.
What Is The Treatment For Sciatica
Bed rest has been traditionally advocated for the treatment of acute sciatica. But how useful is it?
To study the effectiveness of bed rest in patients with sciatica, a research team in the Netherlands led by Dr. Patrick Vroomen randomly assigned 183 such patients to bed rest or, alternatively, to watchful waiting for this period.
The results, reported in the New England Journal of Medicine, showed that after two weeks, 70% patients in the bed-rest group reported improvement, as compared with 65% of the patients in the control group. After 12 weeks, 87% of the patients in both groups reported improvement. The results of assessments of the intensity of pain, the aggravation of symptoms, and functional status revealed no significant differences between the two groups. The extent of absenteeism from work and rates of surgical intervention were similar in the two groups.
The researchers concluded that “among patients with symptoms and signs of sciatica, bed rest is not a more effective therapy than watchful waiting.” Sometimes, conventional wisdom is not as wise as research!
Other treatment options for sciatica depend on its cause and include addressing the underlying cause.
Read Also: How To Heal Wrist Pain
What Is Sciatic Nerve Pain
When certain nerves become pinched in the lower spine running along the sciatic nerve which is the largest single nerve in the human body intense pain can develop that runs the entire length of the legs. Sciatic nerve pain is usually repetitive, felt primarily in one leg and can be described as intolerable by most people who experience it . What makes matters worse is that many people dont know how it developed in the first place or what they can do to prevent;lower back pain from returning. Plus, it can difficult to discern between sciatica and arthritis, often making it difficult to diagnose.
While many people turn to pain-reducing medications or even surgery to correct the problem, studies have actually found that less invasive treatment options like chiropractic spinal adjustments can be just as effective for healing sciatic nerve pain. In fact, a 2010 study published in the Journal of Manipulative Physiological Therapies found that nearly 60 percent of patients with sciatica who failed other medical treatments benefited from spinal manipulation just as well as if they had undergone surgical intervention!
And theres more good news: Acupuncture, yoga and massage therapy are other alternative treatment approaches that been have proven to help act like natural muscle relaxers and kick this type of debilitating pain for good.
How To Sleep With Sciatica
Figuring out how to sleep with sciatica can be a challenge. However, there are some tips and tricks that can help. Get back to sleeping through the night.
The human bodys most powerful recuperative action is restful sleep, yet it is;surprisingly hard to come;by when its;needed the most. Pain can keep us from getting the rest we need or may lead an otherwise restful night to end with an ache-riddled morning.
Getting quality sleep is about more than just avoiding heavy meals late at night, paying attention to your bedtime, and buying a comfortable mattress. There are other factors involved, particularly;how;you sleep and how your body;moves;at nighttime.
If youve recently been told that your leg and back pain may be the result of sciatica, or a pinched nerve in your lower back, then understanding how resting posture and general day-to-day activity can have an impact on your sleep and recovery is important.
You May Like: How To Avoid Neck Pain From Computer
What Can I Expect If I Have Been Diagnosed With Sciatica
The good news about sciatic pain is that it usually goes away on its own with time and some self-care treatments. Most people with sciatica get better without surgery, and about half of these recover from an episode fully within six weeks.
Be sure to contact your healthcare provider if your sciatica pain is not improving and you have concerns that you arent recovering as quickly as hoped.
Does Sitting Make Sciatica Worse
Sitting too much, especially for longer periods of time, can be something that triggers or worsens your sciatic pain. When sitting, the muscles that support the alignment of your pelvis and lower back can become tighter and compress on the sciatic nerve. Taking frequent breaks to move around or stretch may help to relieve the tightness in this area and reduce the pain.
You May Like: How To Relieve Shoulder Pain From Side Sleeping
How Is Sciatica Treated
The goal of treatment is to decrease your pain and increase your mobility. Depending on the cause, many cases of sciatica go away over time with some simple self-care treatments.
Self-care treatments include:
- Appling ice and/or hot packs: First, use ice packs to reduce pain and swelling. Apply ice packs or bag of frozen vegetables wrapped in a towel to the affected area. Apply for 20 minutes, several times a day. Switch to a hot pack or a heating pad after the first several days. Apply for 20 minutes at a time. If youre still in pain, switch between hot and cold packs whichever best relieves your discomfort.
- Taking over-the-counter medicines: Take medicines to reduce pain, inflammation and swelling. The many common over-the-counter medicines in this category, called non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , include aspirin, ibuprofen and naproxen . Be watchful if you choose to take aspirin. Aspirin can cause ulcers and bleeding in some people. If youre unable to take NSAIDS, acetaminophen may be taken instead.
- Performing gentle stretches: Learn proper stretches from an instructor with experience with low back pain. Work up to other general strengthening, core muscle strengthening and aerobic exercises.