The sciatic nerve can become compressed sending pain, tingling and numbness radiating through the lower body in any number of ways. A herniated disc, pregnancy, poor posture, a weakened body core and disease are just a few of the causes for sciatic nerve damage. There are a several approaches to sciatic nerve therapy, and finding a solution that works for you shouldn’t be terribly difficult.
- Often over the counter pain relievers can help to some degree. NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) are commonly more effective than drugs like Tylenol. Aleve and Ibuprofen are made to reducing swelling, which is often the cause of sciatic nerve irritation. However, don’t overuse over the counter pain relievers. When not taken properly their side effects can include liver damage, stomach bleeding and ulcers.
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Not sure which solution is right for you?
- One of the most effective ways to help sciatica – or the symptoms of sciatic nerve damage – is to strengthen your body’s core. Light exercise like walking helps promote good posture and a stronger abdomen and back. This helps support your body from within and relieve pressure on the sensitive areas in your back. Stretching can also help relieve tension in muscles that can aggravate the pain of sciatica. Practicing these techniques regularly can not only help relieve sciatica but prevent damage to the sciatic nerve system in the future.
- Acupuncture is also becoming more and more widely accepted as an effective way to treat sciatica and general back pain. Studies are starting to show acupuncture is a genuine way to relieve pain. The process involves inserting needles at varying depths in the affected area. The Chinese believe this helps restore your body’s flow of “Chi” – or your life force or energy. According to them, a stagnant Chi isn’t natural and results in pain, and stimulating your Chi is one way to relieve that pain.
- Cortisone injections can also be an effective therapy for sciatic nerve damage. It delivers medicine that stimulates healing directly to the damaged area.
- Hot and cold therapy may provide relief for some sciatica sufferers as well. A cold compress or even a bag of frozen vegetables helps to reduce swelling, which in turn lessens pressure on the nerve itself. Heat helps to soothe tense muscles that can be over stimulated as a result of sciatic nerve damage. It also helps increase blood flow which speeds the healing process. For the ultimate in heat relief, try an infrared heating pad. The technology allows heat to penetrate much more deeply than a typical heating pad for long lasting relief. The Healthy Back Institute has a variety of infrared heating pads to suit your needs. Visit their site at www.losethebackpain.com to view their selection of infrared heating pads
- Focus on sitting and standing up straight. Poor posture can exacerbate sciatica. If necessary, invest in a lumbar support cushion for your chair at work. Spending long hours hunched over your computer desk will only make sciatic pain worse. Lumbar support cushions – like those offered by The Healthy Back Institute – helps off set some of your body’s load and support your back. It also promotes good posture and ideal spinal curvature. Some models even have a built in massager to help melt tension away throughout the day. For more information on sciatic nerve therapy, and additional tips and trick for reliving sciatic pain, visit www.losethebackpain.com today.
Written By: Updated: July 1,2011