Sciatica Pain Relief: Rising Above Pain
Lower back pain radiating through the lower half of the body due to sciatica can make any patient get into a hiatus. The journey of recovering from spine injuries can be long and painful but possible with the right treatments. Several sciatica pain relief options are now available to help people with sciatica rise above their condition and live a full life ahead of them.
As a trusted pain management practice in Charlotte, Advanced Sports & Spine aims to improve the quality of life of our patients by reducing their pain through non-surgical approaches. In this post, we will discuss some of the methods on how to relieve sciatica pain.
The shackles of sciatica pain
Sciatica is a condition where the herniated disk puts pressure on the sciatic nerve that causes irritation and inflammation, leading to pain. The sciatic nerve is connected to nerve roots that run through the piriformis muscle in the buttocks.
The pain due to sciatica ranges from mild, tolerable pain to a jolting and debilitating pain that can limit patients from going to work or even moving around the house. Pain specialists recommend several methods to help centralize the pain and make the sciatica symptoms more manageable.
Strengthening the surrounding muscles can help relieve pressure on the sciatic nerve, herniated discs, and even the spinal cord. Medications and non-surgical therapies can also help manage the pain, depending on the severity of the injury.
Is there immediate relief for sciatica pain?
An ice pack or a hot compress can immediately help relieve sciatica pain. Cold therapy helps numb the area by constricting the blood vessels to reduce inflammation and prevent the nerves from sending pain signals to the brain. Pain medication prescribed by your doctor can also provide temporary relief for sciatica pain.
For long-term relief, alleviate the pressure on the sciatic nerve by doing some stretches and moving more. Avoid sitting or standing for several hours since it irritates the sciatic nerve longer.
What are the different options for sciatica pain relief?
It takes a holistic approach to manage the inflammation and irritation of the sciatic nerve. However, with the proper combination of treatments and consistent adherence of patients, recovery from sciatica can last for several months.
Here are some of the sciatica pain relief treatments that you can try:
Physical therapy is usually the first option in treating sciatica. Your doctor will refer you to a physical therapist who will modify exercises and therapies based on your condition and pain level. The goal of physical therapy for sciatica is to relieve the pressure on your herniated disc and promote healing.
The first few weeks after being diagnosed with sciatica, your doctor may prescribe some anti-inflammatory drugs and pain relievers. Along with physical therapy and home remedies, you may take pain medications but may gradually stave off from them in the long run.
Sciatica Exercises & Stretches
Strengthening your back muscles and core muscles can also help with managing the pressure on your spine. Stretching your back through back extension helps open up the spinal discs, which relieves sciatica symptoms.
Several home exercises like glute bridge, on the other hand, help strengthen weak back and glute muscles. Bone and spine injuries are often due to the inability or weakness of the surrounding muscles to support body weight and movement.
Hot and Cold Compresses
A cold compress helps numb the pain and slow down inflammation, while a hot compress helps promote healing around the affected sciatic nerve. Heat also helps the surrounding muscles relax, which prevents muscle spasms in the lower back. Your doctor will advise you with the proper interval between hot and cold compress.
Sciatica is a secondary condition to another spine problem which is the herniated disc. To prevent sciatica from getting worse, you must also make sure that you won’t do anything that can progress the level of your disc herniation.
Activities that add pressure on the spinal disks, like jumping or running, may worsen your back injury. Sitting all day while working can also make your sciatic pain worse. Patients are usually advised to move every 2 to 3 hours, do home stretches, sleep in a certain position, and try to avoid high-intensity workouts that may strain the spinal disks.
Stress may also worsen sciatica and lower back pain. According to a study, psychological factors play a vital role in the way we respond to pain. Some patients have higher pain tolerance, while others have more sensitive pain receptors leading to increased pain.
De-stressing therapies and activities may help speed up your recovery from sciatica. Aside from back problems, nothing good ever comes from stress. So, doing some relaxation techniques is not only for your spine condition but for your overall well-being.
Non-surgical pain treatments
When the sciatica pain no longer responds to traditional approaches, your doctor may recommend some interventional treatments, such as
- Interventional Spinal Injections
- Epidural Injections- Transforaminal/Interlaminar/Caudal
- Medial Branch Blocks/Facet joint injections
- Radiofrequency ablation
- Selective Nerve Block (SNRB) Injection
- Lumbar Sympathetic Block Treatments
- Trigger Point injections
- Sacroiliac Joint Injections
- Ganglion Impar Block
- Regenerative Medicine – Stem Cell Therapy & PRP
Break free from the shackles of sciatica pain with Advanced Sports & Spine
You can heal from sciatica with the proper treatment and lifestyle changes. Several sciatica pain relief options are now available through the help of advanced technology and pain therapies.
Consult our medical team to help you get out of the sleepless nights and tremendous pain caused by sciatica. Dr. Ahmad specializes in sports medicine, spine injury, and pain management treatments in Charlotte. Schedule an appointment today and start your journey towards healing.