Sciatic pain ranges from mildly annoying to excruciating. The numbness, searing ache, and pins and needle sensations radiate from your buttocks, down the back of your leg, and sometimes even into your foot. Simon Forster, DC, and Brian N. Forrest, DC, of Austin Chiropractic Associates, will assess your sciatic pain and look for its origins. If you live in or around Austin, Texas, seek their care to resolve the immediate pain and get at the source of your sciatic pain once and for all.
Does sciatica have certain symptoms?
Yes. Sciatica pain is different than most other types of pain you may have. It’s typically localized to one side of your body and can go from your lower back, all the way down into your feet. With sciatica, you’ll likely experience:
- Shooting pain down the back of your leg
- Constant dull or sharp pain on one side of your buttocks
- Difficulty walking due to leg weakness or numbness
- Pain in your hips
- Leg pain that’s more severe when you sit
- Burning or tingling down your leg
Not all buttock and leg pain is sciatica. There are many other structures in the spine that can cause a similar type of pain. The sacroiliac joints, for example (the joints between sacrum at the base of the spine and the pelvis bones) can cause or refer pain to the buttock, as can irritation or sprains of the spinal (facet) joints, which are the connecting joints of the back of the spine. Sometimes a simple tear or ‘fissure’ in the disc can refer pain down into the leg.
When buttock and leg pain is associated with any neurological symptoms (numbness and weakness) it is often called “radiculopathy”.
Why do I have sciatica?
Sciatica stems from irritation or pressure on your sciatic nerve, one of the largest nerves in your body. Your sciatica might be caused by:
- Irritation of lower lumbar of your spine
- Narrowing of your spinal canal
- Degenerative disc disease
- Slipped discs
- Muscle spasms in your back or buttocks
- Obesity or being overweight
- Wearing high heels
- A sedentary lifestyle
- Sleeping on a soft mattress
How is sciatica treated?
Since sciatica often comes from pressure on your sciatic nerve, treatment is focused on figuring out the source of that pressure and eliminating it. At Austin Chiropractic Associates, we avoid a “one treatment for all” approach. Appropriate treatment is decided depending upon the individual requirements and characteristics of the problem and the patient.
Treatment is generally directed towards eliminating the leg pain, with a variety of approaches that may include McKenzie repeated movement exercises that ‘centralize’ the pain to the back, manipulation techniques,spinal decompression, myofascial techniques along with appropriate physiotherapeutic modalities as necessary.
The most appropriate combination of treatments is directed towards reducing swelling and irritation, relaxion muscle spasm and tension, and improving the mechanical functioning of the spine. We discuss with you the very best approach towards helping relieve you of your sciatica pain.