If you’re dealing with a painful sciatica flare-up, you likely have one question on the top of your mind: How long does sciatica nerve pain last?
I have good news for you if this is the first time you’re experiencing sciatica pain.
Acute episodes generally resolve relatively quickly, usually within a few weeks.
But here’s the rub…
“If you don’t identify the root cause of your sciatica pain, there’s a high probability your first episode won’t be your last.”
And unfortunately, sciatica flare-up recovery time for subsequent episodes is much longer… and it requires more intervention and a far more comprehensive sciatica treatment plan.
That’s why it’s so important to understand the difference between acute and chronic sciatica, and how you can minimize your chances of further flare-ups down the road.
How long sciatica pain lasts: acute vs. chronic
Acute sciatica comes on suddenly and resolves quickly, and usually responds well to self-care measures and home treatments.
(Please note: If your pain is severe and it’s accompanied by muscle weakness and/or loss of bowel or bladder control, you should seek the advice of a medical professional.)
Most mainstream medical doctors will recommend treatment options like over-the-counter painkillers such as NSAIDs.
NSAIDs, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, include popular pain pills like ibuprofen or naproxen.
While these pain medications may help ease your discomfort in the short-term, they come with potentially serious side effects, including an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.
For short-term pain relief, you’re better off using a combination of natural pain relievers, and alternating between cold therapy and heat therapy.
For heat therapy, I highly recommend using a far-infrared heating pad. You can read more about why right here.
Chronic sciatica is more problematic, but also treatable
If the root cause of your sciatica isn’t addressed early on, the chances are extremely high that you’ll develop chronic sciatica: recurring flare-ups that last longer and require more extensive treatment.
It’s not a matter of IF you’ll have sciatic nerve pain again, it’s a matter of WHEN.
At that point, your doctor or healthcare provider may prescribe stronger painkillers, take a variety of imaging tests, or refer you for physical therapy.
In extreme cases, the treatment options become even more invasive.
That’s why it’s so important to not only treat the pain, but the underlying condition responsible for the pain.
If you don’t, you will likely find that sciatica is a lifelong condition.
And that means a life spent managing chronic pain.
To get rid of sciatica pain, fix this common underlying cause
The four conditions listed below are the most common causes of sciatic pain:
You can read more detail about each condition right here.
Here’s what I want you to understand…
Each of the four conditions I listed above has an underlying cause, too: muscle imbalances.
In fact, in nearly every case of sciatica, muscle imbalances are the primary cause of the pressure being placed on the sciatic nerve…
This treatment option will help you eliminate your sciatica pain
It took me years of research to learn the true root cause of most back pain issues (including sciatica).
Addressing muscle imbalances is the most important step you MUST take if your goal is lasting pain relief.
“Simply put, a muscle imbalance occurs when one muscle (or group of muscles) works harder than they should, while other muscles don’t work hard enough. This can eventually lead to sciatica nerve pain.”
You see, the muscles in your body work in balanced symmetry — much like the wheels of a car.
When the wheels are out of balance, you’ll begin to notice uneven wear on the tires.
The car will start to pull to one side… you’ll get poor gas mileage… and you run the risk of doing permanent, of a complete tire blowout.
The same is true with the muscles in your body.
When some muscles don’t function as they should, the others have to pick up the slack. And that throws them completely out of whack.
And when your muscles are out of balance, they pull your bones and joints out of their normal position — and this places them under constant and uneven stress and strain.
And these muscle imbalances are the hidden cause of nearly every case of back pain you’re experiencing — including the conditions that lead to sciatica pain.
In the video below, I show you how muscle imbalances cause back pain.
The frequency and duration of your sciatica pain depend on how and when you choose to treat it.
Sciatica pain is a symptom of larger underlying pain conditions (which I outlined above).
The key to fixing those root causes requires some lifestyle changes, which will benefit you in the long run in many ways.
Modern mainstream medicine suggests taking NSAIDs, such as Advil, to reduce sciatica pain, however NSAIDs can be dangerous to your health and they only address a symptom, not the cause.
For your sciatica pain to go away, you must identify and correct the muscle imbalances in your body.
I show you how to find and fix these imbalances in my Lose the Back Pain system.
Other lifestyle changes include changing your diet to eat foods that reduce inflammation in your body.
These lifestyle changes may seem like more work than popping Advil every time a flare-up, but they will provide lasting relief from sciatica pain.
Ready to take the steps toward a pain-free life? Click right here to learn more about how we treat sciatica and other pain conditions.
Written By: Updated: July 27,2018