Many times back pain is not just back pain. Instead, it could be sciatica pain, which causes pain in the lower back, throughout the buttocks, and down the legs. While 90 percent of individuals with sciatica pain recover without the need of surgery, it can still be a painful experience. Learn all the facts so that you can better treat and prevent sciatica pain.
Symptoms of Sciatica Pain
Sciatica pain occurs when pressure or an injury occurs on the sciatic nerve. You can tell the sciatica is the root of the problem when your lower back pain consists of hip, buttocks, and leg pain. The pain literally shoots down from the lower back, throughout the hips and buttocks, and down one leg. The leg may also feel weak, numb, or tingly at certain times. The pain also becomes worse when you sit, cough, or sneeze. These symptoms can appear suddenly and last for day or weeks at a time. The pain is often time debilitating.
People at Risk for Sciatica
Even though 85 percent of Americans will have issues with their back, not all will develop sciatica. Most individuals get sciatica between the ages of 30 and 50. It is also very common in pregnant women, since the pressure of the growing uterus and baby pushes on the sciatic nerve. In other cases, herniated discs and degenerative arthritis are to blame.
Diagnosing Sciatica Pain
Most doctors or chiropractors will ask you a series of questions and put you through simple tests to determine if it is your sciatic nerve that has been affected. If your pain is accompanies with loss of bladder or bowel control, then it is vital to seek emergency help right away. This could be a sign of a medical emergency. However, this is quite rare, but good to keep in mind for the future. Older individuals may have to undergo an MRI for sciatica pain that lasts for a long time. This is to search for arthritis or tumors. These both occur very infrequently, and an MRI is probably unnecessary for younger individuals or women who are post-partum.
There are many different ways to treat sciatica pain, but the best way to treat it is naturally. A chiropractor can help take pressure off the sciatic nerve, which will in turn relieve the pain. Furthermore, a massage therapist can make you feel better instantly by massaging the affected area. At home, you can try warm baths and ice pads, as well as targeted stretches. It is best to get to the root of the problem with chiropractic care before you start taking medication for it.
Sciatica pain is not pleasant for anyone. If you think that you have that type of pain, then visit your chiropractor. Chiropractors specialize in back pain, making them a good resource.
Remember to always consult your chiropractor or physician before taking any health advice.
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