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Sciatica: 10 Things to Know & What to do About it

Sciatica: 10 Things to Know & What to do About it

Sciatica is about more than the pain. Actually, it’s not even a medical diagnosis but a symptom of an underlying problem affecting the sciatic nerve.  There are a few well-known facts about this back nerve pain you may already know; there are also a few little-known facts that may help you discover new ways of achieving pain relief. 

5 Common Facts About Sciatica

Some of the most well-known facts about sciatica pain include:

1.      Sciatica can result from a bulging or herniated disc.

2.      Symptoms usually include a sharp, burning sensation that shoots down the leg from the lower back. 

3.      Men and the middle-aged are more susceptible to sciatica pain. 

4.      Sciatica pain makes it hard to move, twist, walk and do daily activities.

5.      Pain relief often requires multiple treatment methods.  

Many patients who come to Slovin Chiropractic Center with sciatica are looking to avoid overusing medications that are often the go-to for sciatica pain relief. We focus on fixing the body’s structure so it can use its natural internal healing resources.  Before we dive into that, let’s look at a few unusual facts about sciatica.

5 Unusual Facts About Sciatica

Nothing is ever as simple as it seems on the surface.  While those with sciatica know all about the painful side effects and symptoms, there may be a few things related to sciatic nerve pain that aren’t so obvious.  These things could be keeping you from receiving adequate pain relief for the back nerve pain.

1.      Diabetic nerve pain looks a lot like sciatic nerve pain; therefore, if you have a history of diabetes either personally or in your immediate family, start with bloodwork to look for the root cause of the pain. Diabetic neuropathy is caused by high blood sugar levels and can permanently damage nerves. 

2.      Bad posture could cause sciatica.  Think about how much you sit, slouch, and look down at your phone or tablet. Your spine goes out of alignment, putting pressure on the discs, which can rupture or herniate, leading to neck and back pain.  

3.      Sciatica may change the way you walk.  Some become hunched over or develop a limp to compensate for the back nerve pain. 

4.      While well known, sciatica is not as common as many people think.  Lumbar disc herniation is the most common cause of sciatica; however, only 5% of those cases turn into sciatic nerve pain.

5.      Most sciatica cases can be treated at home or with non-invasive, drug-free treatments from a Gonstead chiropractor.  

Self-Care for Sciatic Nerve Pain Relief

When the sciatic nerve pain is intense and disruptive, you can start with rest and ice or heat treatments.  Most of the time, ice works best as the pain is usually due to inflammation. Brew a natural anti-inflammatory tea with household turmeric and fresh ginger mixed with green tea to avoid over-the-counter anti-inflammatories.  Drink the tea regularly throughout the day for optimal benefit.

When you’re ready to move gently, start with exercises and stretches that ease the disc into place (if it’s ruptured), strengthen the back’s muscles, and reduce inflammation. Two simple, gentle poses that offer some pain relief include:

1.      Cow and cat pose.  On all fours, alternate arching and hunching the back in slow movements, breathing 1-3 times in each position before switching. 

2.      The child’s pose is a great position to lengthen and stretch the back. It promotes flexibility and openness in the hips. This will help relieve pressure on the sciatic nerve. 

Here are ten other poses that would be good for sciatica pain relief.

Non-invasive, Drug-Free Sciatica Pain Relief

Sometimes, back nerve pain requires medical treatment. Gonstead adjustments and chiropractic care are non-invasive, drug-free, and effective for sciatica pain relief. Watch the video below to see a Gonstead chiropractor fix low back pain.

The Gonstead technique is a targeted, specific chiropractic treatment that adjusts the spine, hips, and extremities.  Problem areas are identified before the adjustment, so it’s nothing like general spinal manipulation. Instead, the Gonstead method demands precision, thereby personalizing your treatment and making it far more effective. 

If you’ve been suffering from sciatica and are looking for safe and effective pain relief, Dr. Slovin in Norwalk can help. 

Sources:

SpineUniverse: Things to avoid with sciatica

Spine-Health: 10 Quick Facts about Sciatica

International Spine Institute:  Everything you need to know about sciatica


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Treating Sciatica Pain and Hunchback the Gonstead Way

Treating Sciatica Pain and Hunchback the Gonstead Way

Sciatica pain is generally confined to the lower back; however, it affects the entire spine. Many vertebrae in the upper and mid-back will move out of place, turn around, or swell because of low back pain that causes you to hunch your shoulders and back for long periods.

What is Kyphosis, and What Causes it?

Kyphosis is the medical term for a hunchback.  It’s an outward curvature of the mid to upper spine and is frequently accompanied by pain and discomfort about the humped appearance.  The cause of kyphosis could be hereditary, the result of trauma or disease, or poor posture.  Most of the time, it’s due to poor posture, trauma, or disease.

As Gonstead chiropractors in Norwalk, we see a lot of patients with sciatica pain and hunchback. If it’s due to bad posture, we can get the spine back to its proper alignment.  If it’s due to disease, trauma, or present since birth, our Gonstead chiropractic techniques can help reduce and manage symptoms safely, noninvasively, and effectively. 

What is Sciatica, and What Causes the Pain?

The sciatic nerve starts in your lower back and travels down your hips, buttocks, leg, and feet. This important nerve makes actions like sitting, running, walking, lifting, standing, and climbing possible.

The causes of sciatica pain are usually:

·         Spinal bone spurs (hard, smooth bumps of extra bone)

·         Herniated disc

·         Spinal stenosis (narrowing of the canal in which the nerve passes)

How Gonstead Adjustments Treat Sciatica Pain and Hunchback

There are five components to receiving a Gonstead adjustment:

1.    We’ll do an x-ray if there’s a suspected injury.

2.    Palpation is where your chiropractor physically feels the spine to look for swelling and abnormalities.

3.    Instrumentation is when I’ll use a Nervoscope to compare bilateral temperatures, helping me find those specific areas of inflammation and muscle spasm.

4.    Visualization is when your chiropractor watches your body’s movements while walking and performing simple actions and your position while sitting and standing still.

5.    Symptomatology is the study of symptoms. Gonstead chiropractors use this to understand your whole body better. To perform adequate treatment, we need to consider every symptom you’re experiencing, including things that may seem unrelated, such as sleep disturbances, menstrual problems, sexual dysfunction, extreme fatigue, and constipation. 

During the visualization and palpation stages of your treatment, your Gonstead chiropractor can see and feel the areas of inflammation, pain, stiffness, and numbness around the affected vertebrae down the length of the entire spine. 

When there’s significant swelling, I’ll ice and repair the disc before moving onto the adjustment.  That means when discs are significantly rotated, moved, or misaligned, I’ll perform specific techniques to repair that disc before performing the more intense adjustment. 

Note, this can be a painful process, but it’s a temporary discomfort that’ll provide significant relief.  Sometimes, following the adjustment of a severely misaligned vertebra, I’ll place an ice pack on the area to help the “angry nerves” calm down. 

Kyphosis caused by sciatica pain is a condition we regularly treat at Slovin Chiropractic Center.  We’re committed to the Gonstead technique because it’s proven effective, safe, and noninvasive.  It’s a far cry from other methods like spinal manipulation.  Manipulation is a generic treatment, kind of like performing exploratory surgery for a persistent stomachache. Manipulation doesn’t identify the origin of the problem, so symptoms are more likely to return.

If you’re ready to change the way you move, make an appointment with a Gonstead chiropractor in Norwalk today. 

Sources:

·         YouTube:  *HUNCHING OVER* From PAIN Helped with Gonstead Chiropractic

·         YouTube:  Hunched over in pain HELPED by Dr Suh Gonstead Chiropractor

·         How Chiropractic Helps Patients Who Suffer From Kyphosis

·         How Chiropractic Helps Those That Suffer from Sciatica


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