Millions of people experience periodic or constant back pain at some point in their lives. For some, the pain disappears within a day or two with the help of over-the-counter pain relief and stretches. For others, more significant efforts are required to relieve the pain. One of the more common causes of lingering or severe back pain is sciatica. With a closer look at what sciatica is and how chiropractic therapy may be used as an effective treatment, you may be able to find relief for your own bothersome back pain.
The sciatic nerve runs through your spinal cord, starting at the lower back. It splits at the buttocks area and runs down both of your legs all the way to your feet. As the longest nerve, any pressure along the length of the nerve can cause pain along its length. Common causes of sciatic nerve pressure are spinal stenosis, bone spurs and herniated discs in the lower back. Depending on where the pressure is along the sciatic nerve and depending on the intensity of that pressure, sciatica can feel like numbness, tingling, weakness, mild aching or even a sharp, shooting pain. Some people experience sciatic nerve pain symptoms related to an injury, and others may experience pain because of wear caused by normal body mechanics. You should receive a diagnosis of sciatica from your doctor before attempting to seek treatment for your back pain. This is particularly important if you have ongoing pain, pain from an injury or suddenly intense pain.
Learning How Chiropractic Therapy Can Help
Chiropractic care is one of the more common methods used to successfully treat sciatica. Chiropractors use manual pressure, massage and manipulation to promote healthy alignment along the spine. Through this process, many causes of pressure along the spine may be alleviated. In most cases, the pain relief is immediate and complete. While some people will not need to return to a clinic for additional chiropractic treatment, others who have a chronic condition may need to return periodically for additional treatments as the symptoms become more pronounced again over time.
Understanding Alternatives to Chiropractic Therapy
Chiropractic therapy is just one of several treatment options available for you to consider. Before you decide if you should visit a chiropractor for treatment for your sciatica symptoms, it is important to explore the other options available. For relief of a minor or temporary case of sciatica, learning how to do effective stretches at home can be effective. A physical therapist may help you to improve your posture while sitting and standing so that less pressure is placed on your nerve. Increasing your level of exercise, treating yourself to a day of bed rest as needed, using over-the-counter pain medication and even applying hot and cold packs in alternating fashion may provide relief. A combination of these home-based treatments may be effective for some people. Prescription painkillers are another option, but there is a risk of becoming addicted or misusing these medications. Some people who have a serious and ongoing case of sciatica will use surgery for permanent relief of symptoms, but there is considerable cost, downtime and pain associated with this type of treatment.
Many people who suffer from sciatica will try multiple pain relief or treatment solutions before they find one that is effective for them. However, surgery is usually viewed as a last option because of how significant this treatment is. If you are suffering from sciatic pain and are looking for a way to avoid the use of prescription painkillers and surgery, a good option to try is chiropractic treatment. Through one-time or periodic treatments by a chiropractor, you may be able to find the relief that you need and be able to enjoy your days and nights free of bothersome or debilitating pain. Consulting with a local chiropractor can help you to better determine if this is a treatment option that may be suitable for you.
Follow Vibrant Life!