Sciatica Pain – Try this first

For those who don’t know, sciatica is intense pain in the legs caused by a pinching of the sciatic nerve.  Many doctors believe that sciatica is usually caused by spinal bones pinching a nerve in your back, leading to pain in the legs.  Sometimes, a highly invasive surgical procedure called “spinal fusion” can reduce or remove sciatica symptoms.  Unfortunately, this surgery often does not work, and after that, the only solution remaining to doctors is potentially addictive pain medication.

However, a 2005 study from the Journal of Neurosurgery found that most people who did not respond to this surgery actually had sciatica pain caused by a muscle pinching their nerve.  The good news about that is that we can treat these soft-tissue issues through non-surgical means.
If you’re experiencing sciatic nerve pain, before you take the plunge on radical surgery, give these exercises and treatments a try:

  • Walk backwards and sideways to try to stimulate different muscles around the sciatic nerve.
  • Stand on a tennis ball and roll it around under your foot.  This will stimulate nerves in the bottoms of your feet that are connected all the way up through your spine, and cause a release of tension and pressure.
  • Get a professional massage, and mention your sciatica pain.
  • Use an inversion table to release the pressure of gravity on your legs, feet, and spine.
  • Take hot baths with Epsom salts or Himalayan salt.
  • Cold laser or infrared therapy can help heat and relax muscles that cause you pain.
  • Try this stretch: lie on your back with your knees bent and place one leg over the other.  Feel the stretch, and then do it on the other side.

If you have sciatica, make sure you discuss it with your doctor, but keep in mind that the traditional explanation for sciatica may not be the right one for you. Invasive procedures may not be the best option, and hopefully they aren’t the first option your doctor suggests.

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