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Chiropractor and Sciatica

What is Sciatica?

I can’t stand up straight! My lower back hurts so bad! I can feel pain and sometimes even numbness and tingling down my legs!

Chiropractic Treatment of Sciatica Pain

Many patients come into a chiropractors office with one or more of the above symptoms. This type of situation is not only uncomfortable but many times will impact your day to day activities, your relationships with your family and friends, or your job as well. To continue to live in pain and discomfort like this and hope that it will get better on its own can often times lead to a much more severe issue.

Symptoms of Sciatica

These symptoms are very commonly associated with sciatica. True sciatica is caused by compression on the nerves that exit out of the spine at the L3-L5 levels. When these nerves are compressed or irritated, the signal from the brain down the spinal cord and along those nerves gets disrupted, causing numbness and tingling or pain and even sometimes problems with muscle contraction in the legs.

Causes of Sciatica

There are many causes of these symptoms so as a result there are many different treatment options. Many times the problem is a disc prolapse or herniation. When this happens the space between the vertebrae where the nerves exit out of the spinal cord gets blocked by the disc contents protruding out and disrupting the passageway of the nerve. This is often times painful and depending on the severity it can be treated very successfully by a chiropractor.

Other times the sciatica symptoms can be caused by piriformis syndrome. The piriformis is a flat muscle in the buttock region that passes over or underneath the sciatic nerve and in some individuals the sciatic nerve actually runs right through the muscle belly.  Many times a tight or spasmed piriformis muscle that can compress on the sciatic nerve and cause pain or dysfunction of the sciatic nerve.

Due to the specific nature of sciatic symptoms it is important to be evaluated to see what the best form of treatment is for your situation. Many times chiropractic care is the least invasive, most effective and cost effective treatment for the issue. A thorough consultation and evaluation is necessary to determine the best treatment options for you.

If you are experiencing sciatic symptoms there are a few things that you can try at home. The Mckenzie method is a series of stretches used to aid in short term relief of pain that you are experiencing with sciatic. If the piriformis muscle is tight there are certain stretches that will relax this muscle as well. Click here for a link to one of the best stretches for the piriformis muscle.

These stretches can help relieve short term discomfort from your symptoms but in order to prevent these symptoms from returning chiropractic care can help. Chiropractic is effective at correctly aligning the spine and removing pressure on the nerves exiting out the spine with specific, scientific adjustments. As the body starts to realign the force that you