Is The Weight Of Pregnancy The Reason Why So Many Pregnant Women Get Sciatica
Its true that sciatica is common in pregnancy but increased weight is not the main reason why pregnant women get sciatica. A better explanation is that certain hormones of pregnancy cause a loosening of their ligaments. Ligaments hold the vertebrae together, protect the disks and keep the spine stable. Loosened ligaments can cause the spine to become unstable and might cause disks to slip, which leads to nerves being pinched and the development of sciatica. The babys weight and position can also add pressure to the nerve.
The good news is there are ways to ease sciatic pain during pregnancy, and the pain goes away after birth. Physical therapy and massage therapy, warm showers, heat, medications and other measures can help. If you are pregnant, be sure to follow good posture techniques during pregnancy to also ease your pain.
Surgeons Say One In Four Patients With Pain After Knee Replacement Had No Clear Reasoning For Their Pain It Wasnt The Hardware It Wasnt Anything Obvious That They Could See
In the research above, surgeons have a road map of where to look for pain after knee replacement. Returning to the findings released in the British Pain Journal , the doctors suggest looking for pain in other places that are usually not explored:
- Our main findings are that some patients have severe pain that interferes significantly with their lives and that a large number of them have pain sensitization problems , many of which can be classified as neuropathic pain , rather than any local, nociceptive cause .
- A heightened sense of pain following knee replacement will be discussed throughout this article.
What is the research saying?
In November 2018 a study was published in the Journal of Knee Surgery. The doctors also were looking at nerve pain after surgery.
- The study had 154 patients with 222 knee replacements
- The goal of the study was to define the prevalence of pain persisting after total knee replacement and determine the impact of neuropathic pain.
- The ratio of patients with
- moderate-to-severe pain was 28% .
- Thirteen patients experienced unclear pain.
- A significant number of patients experienced moderate-to-severe and unclear pain after total knee replacement.
It looked like neuropathy but it wasnt neuropathy.
Physical Treatments And Interventions
- Activity modification for musculoskeletal pain. Changes in your mobility equipment , your wheelchair pushing and transfer techniques, and in the way you do pressure reliefs can significantly decrease pain in your muscles and joints. Exercises that strengthen and balance your joints can also help reduce musculoskeletal pain.
- Physical therapyis used to treat musculoskeletal pain. Stretching and range of motion exercises may help relieve pain associated with muscle tension. Exercises that strengthen weak muscles can restore balance in painful joints and reduce pain.
- Therapeutic massage may help relieve musculoskeletal pain due to muscle tightness and muscle imbalance.
- Acupunctureis used to treat musculoskeletal pain. Tiny needles are inserted into the skin at specific points on the body. This method is thought to work by stimulating the body’s pain control system or by blocking the flow of pain.
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation is sometimes used to treat musculoskeletal pain. Electrodes are placed on the surface of your skin and send low levels of electrical current into your body. The current blocks signals from the areas of nerve damage that are triggering a pain response.
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What Symptoms Can I Expect
Symptoms associated with a knee injury or disorder can vary greatly and may not be constant for every patient. Some people describe their pain as a dull ache or throbbing felt throughout the knee. Other people experience sharp, stabbing discomfort in a specific location.
Symptoms can include:
- Stiffness or swelling in the joint
- Changes in skin color around the knee joint, i.e. increased redness or paleness
- A sensation of coldness, numbness, or tingling in or around the joint
- Increased instability or feeling of weakness in the knee
- Reduced movement or flexibility in the joint
How Can I Ease The Pain Of Neuropathy
There are different ways you can ease the pain of neuropathy. These include:
Exercise Engaging in regular exercises, such as walking can help reduce neuropathy pain and improve muscle strength.
Over-the-counter pain relievers Taking over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and naproxen can help relieve neuropathic pain.
Opioids If over-the-counter pain relievers dont relieve your pain, taking medications containing opioids, such as tramadol or oxycodone can help relieve neuropathic pain. However, these medications are addictive and should be taken for a short time.
Anti-seizure medications Anti-seizure medications such as gabapentin and pregabalin may relieve nerve pain.
Antidepressants Taking tricyclic antidepressants, such as amitriptyline, doxepin and nortriptyline can help relieve pain.
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Avoid These Sciatica Pain Sleeping Positions
Its generally recommended that you avoid sleeping on your stomach if youre dealing with sciatica or other forms of lower back pain.
When you sleep on your stomach, your spine tends to curve toward the mattress. This curvature can put stress on your muscles or joints, especially if you sleep on a soft mattress.
No matter what position you sleep in, its a good idea to avoid twisting your spine or hips since this may put pressure on your sciatic nerve.
April 2, 2018 By Amy Fahlman
As a physiotherapist, it is a common occurrence for someone to walk into my office claiming they have sciatica. Somehow sciatica, the medical term for leg pain generated by the sciatic nerve, has become the umbrella term for all pain that is generated in the back or the hips and travels down the leg.
However, this is not always the case. Various body structures or tissues can cause pain to refer down the leg, and they all require different treatment. Thats why it is critical to identify the appropriate term for your leg pain before assuming it is sciatica.
For example, if you are experiencing leg pain and turn to Google for sciatica exercises, you may end up with movements for the wrong diagnosis, which could worsen the problem. This blog post will discuss 5 things you need to know regarding sciatica physiotherapy, including the distinctly different causes of sciatica-like pain patterns, and how the exercises differ with each one.
Common Treatments Target Causes Symptoms
Neuropathy takes many forms, and the treatments for neuropathic pain are varied as well. Following are three common causes and treatments for neuropathic pain:
- Multiple malfunctions. When peripheral nerves in more than one part of the body malfunction at the same time, the condition is called polyneuropathy. Diabetes is the most common etiologyor causeof polyneuropathy. Treating the underlying issue may stabilize the condition, reducing symptoms. This could involve better blood sugar control in people with diabetic neuropathy to reduce symptoms and prevent additional damage to the nerves. If a vitamin deficiency is causing the pain, changes in diet or supplementation will typically be recommended.
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What Symptoms Are Associated With Nerve Damage
When a nerve is compressed, it can cause symptoms that extend beyond the damaged area. Nerve pain in the leg, as youve learned, can be caused by a variety of factors. That being said, many nerve injuries exhibit similar symptoms.
Typical symptoms include:
- Pain: Including burning, shooting, electrical, or radiating pain felt throughout the lower body.
- Pain after certain activities: Prolonged sitting or standing, as well as activities like walking, climbing stairs, or rising out of a chair, may increase pain.
- Numbness or tingling: Loss of sensation in the leg muscles, calf, foot, and/or toes.
- Weakness: Decreased muscle function in the hip, leg, thigh, foot, or toes.
- Foot drop: Difficulty lifting the foot, also known as foot drop.
- Loss of balance: Feeling unstable and more prone to falls.
Since symptoms alone may not determine the cause of your pain, it is essential to obtain an accurate diagnosis prior to starting any new treatments.
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.
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What Can Cause Lower Back Pain
Most acute low back pain is mechanical in nature, meaning that there is a disruption in the way the components of the back fit together and move. Some examples of mechanical causes of low back pain include:
- Skeletal irregularities such as scoliosis , lordosis , kyphosis , and other congenital anomalies of the spine.
- Spina bifida which involves the incomplete development of the spinal cord and/or its protective covering and can cause problems involving malformation of vertebrae and abnormal sensations and even paralysis.
- Sprains , strains , and spasms
- Traumatic Injury such as from playing sports, car accidents, or a fall that can injure tendons, ligaments, or muscle causing the pain, as well as compress the spine and cause discs to rupture or herniate.
- Intervertebral disc degeneration which occurs when the usually rubbery discs wear down as a normal process of aging and lose their cushioning ability.
- Spondylosis the general degeneration of the spine associated with normal wear and tear that occurs in the joints, discs, and bones of the spine as people get older.
- Arthritis or other inflammatory disease in the spine, including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis as well as spondylitis, an inflammation of the vertebrae.
Nerve and spinal cord problems
Massage With Warm Oil
Another great way to reduce the pain from a pinched nerve is by massaging your muscles with warm oil. This will help activate pressure points. In turn, blood flow will improve, stiff muscles will relax, mobility improves, and the pain lessens.
Try warm olive, mustard, or coconut oil along with a few drops of peppermint oil.
Gently rub on the affected area and massage for ten minutes.
Do two times a day until you see an improvement. You may need to ask for help if its in an area you cant reach by yourself.
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What Causes Nerve Pain In Your Knee That Is Directly Related To Knee Problems
Nerve injuries in the knee are common after surgery, like total knee replacement, where the outside nerves get stretched. This can lead to weakness in the ankle commonly referred to as foot drop. There are also superficial sensory nerves that run on the inside and outside of the knee that can be irritated during pressure, certain clothing, knee braces, prior surgery or incisions, or very loose knees, like knock-kneed or bow-legged knees that lead to stretching of the nerves.
Complementary And Alternative Techniques Include:
- Acupuncture is moderately effective for chronic low back pain. It involves inserting thin needles into precise points throughout the body and stimulating them , which may cause the body to release naturally occurring painkilling chemicals such as endorphins, serotonin, and acetylcholine.
- Behavioral approaches include:
- Biofeedback involves attaching electrodes to the skin and using an electromyography machine that allows people to become aware of and control their breathing, muscle tension, heart rate, and skin temperature people regulate their response to pain by using relaxation techniques
- Cognitive therapy involves using relaxation and coping techniques to ease back pain
Spinal injections include:Trigger point injections can relax knotted muscles that may contribute to back pain. An injection or series of injections of a local anesthetic and often a corticosteroid drug into the trigger point can lessen or relieve pain.
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Ive Been Diagnosed With Nerve Painnow What
Once you have obtained an accurate diagnosis, your treatment team can start suggesting conservative approaches for pain relief. Unless your symptoms are severe or causing you immediate dangersuch as cauda equina syndromenon-surgical approaches are often recommended.
Here are some things you can do for yourself to relieve nerve pain.
Nerve Root Wiggle Room
Its amazingly difficult to actually pinch most nerves, or nerve roots . In general, nerves have extremely generous wiggle room. For instance, in the lumbar spine, the holes between the vertebrae that the nerve roots pass through can be more than a couple centimetres at their widest, while the nerve roots themselves are only about 3-4mm thick.12 If you stretch or compress the spine, the holes do change size a little as much as 70130% in the looser neck joints,13 a little less in the low back.14 But even at their smallest, theres still plenty of room.
Schematic of nerve root wiggle room
On the left are the approximate proportions of a healthy nerve root & the hole it passes through . When the spine is pulled or compressed, the holes get a little larger or smaller, as shown on the right but theres still lots of nerve root room.
Theres so much space for nerve roots that even dislocations routinely fail to cause impingement.15 Once again, I invoke the example of a patient with a severe lumbar dislocation and no symptoms at all, not even symptoms of pinched nerve roots. Her nerves seemed to be fine, even in an anatomical situation most people would assume to be extremely dangerous.
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How To Treat A Pinched Nerve: 10 Home Remedies For Quick Relief
Did you know that pinched nerves send your body warning signs such as pain? Do not ignore them.
In this article, we will examine ten things you can do at home to help relieve the pain associated with the pinched nerve.
Do you want to learn how to treat a pinched nerve? Then keep reading to find out!
When Chronic Pain Comes From The Nerves These Nerve Pain Medications Can Help When Added To Other Pain Relievers
For chronic muscle and joint pain, effective therapies include rest, ice and heat, anti-inflammatory medications, and time. Usually, the pain calms down and you feel better.
However, muscle and joints may be only part of the picture. For instance, pain can be coming primarily from irritated nerves, along with the injured and inflamed muscle or joint.
Often the discomfort is only arising from nerve pain. Typical signs of this “neuropathic” pain include sharp, stinging pain or pain that radiates from one part of the body to adjacent areas. One of the most common causes is diabetes, although it can also be brought on by injury, infection, and some medications.
“People say things like, ‘My knee hurts and I feel like it’s coming up to the middle of my thigh and down to my shin,” says Dr. Padma Gulur, a pain medicine specialist at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital. “In those cases, the nerve may be involved.”
In neuropathic pain, the nerve that was the mere messenger of pain now becomes the actual source. Narcotic pain relievers don’t often help and even when they do, they should not be used as a long term solution. Fortunately there are other options. Certain drugs that were originally developed to treat depression and seizure disorders also damp down inappropriate or excessive pain signaling in the nerves.
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Fall Asleep Faster And Sleep Longer
When you have a restful nights sleep, your back will feel less sore during the day.7 A night of restorative sleep can have healing benefits and make you feel refreshed, rejuvenated, and less stressed.
Try these natural sleep aids, one at a time, to see which one works best for you:
- Vitamins C and B6. The natural steroids in your body control your metabolism and promote good sleep.8,9 Supplements of vitamins C10 and B611 are known to help the body produce and regulate natural steroid hormones.
- Melatonin. Your natural sleep hormone, melatonin can be taken as a supplement to improve your sleep cycle.
- L-theanine. An amino acid found in tea leaves, L-theanine may help some people feel relaxed and get better sleep.
- Valerian. Supplements made from the root of the valerian plant may help you sleep faster and stay asleep longer.
Another option is cherry juice or cherry extractscherries contain certain enzymes that help promote better sleep.4
Beware Of Sciatic Nerve Pain
Sciatic nerve pain is a common condition that affects 10% of Americans with back pain. The disease is prevalent in persons with chronic lower back pain and athletes. Sciatic nerve pain comes from the sciatic nerve, the largest nerve in the body. This nerve starts in the lower back, branches through the buttocks, and down the lower leg. Persons with sciatic nerve pain feel pain and numbness in the back of the thigh, leg, and buttocks.
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How Long Does A Pinched Nerve Last
Pinched nerve recovery time depends on both the amount of damage and the type of treatment you choose.
Damage from a pinched nerve may be minor or severe. It may cause temporary or long-lasting problems. The earlier you get a diagnosis and treatment for nerve compression, the more quickly youll find relief.
Lets get right down to how to heal your compressed nerve as quickly as possible without medication.