Sciatica is a painful and sometimes debilitating form of back pain. There are several different versions of it, but in a nutshell, it involves pinching, irritation, or pressure on nerves connecting the spinal cord to the sciatic nerve (or on the sciatic nerve itself). The pain originates in the lower spine and then radiates outward through the lower body and down one or both legs. Sciatica can flare up at any time and for people who have the condition, that total unpredictability is one of the worst things about it. The impact on quality of life can be serious, causing ordinary activities to become difficult and painful: walking, sitting down, getting up, rolling over in bed, sneezing, coughing, and much more.
Surgery or pain pills can sometimes end, or at least mitigate, the torment of a sciatica sufferer. But there are some all-natural ways to manage the pain. The most basic is to be active when you aren’t in the throes of a flare-up. Stand up more and walk around. Another basic one is being sure to get plenty of sleep; it gives your body a chance to heal and rebuild.
Yoga is a very effective way to promote wellness in general and certain yoga exercises can do wonders for sciatica. It’s important to avoid moves that place a lot of stress on the lower back, such as bending or folding forward. But even if you don’t get into formal yoga practices, you should at least try some stretching exercises. They’re easy and they don’t take long. For more details about them, check out the video we’ve posted below.
A deep massage can help reduce sciatica pain by loosening up muscles and releasing endorphins. A cold compress can lower inflammation while a heating pad or warm bath can stimulate beneficial blood flow. An alternate treatment to consider is acupuncture; some people swear by it.
If you have sciatica, have any of these treatments helped? Let’s hear from you in the Facebook comments and don’t forget to like and share!