Severe sciatica happens when the sciatic nerve becomes compressed. This can be a result of just about anything, ranging from pregnancy to a herniated disc, to habitual poor posture.
Sciatica is actually the term used to define the symptoms that result from sciatic nerve compression. These symptoms include pain in the low back, numbness and tingling in the lower extremities and overall lower body discomfort that is often isolated to one side or the other.
Anything that throws your body’s natural alignment off can result in sciatica. Pregnancy is a major cause of poor spinal alignment, especially in the later months when weight becomes extreme on the front of the body. Even when a pregnant mom is sitting, and balance is more stable, she experiences extreme pressure on the lower part of her back and abdomen, which can easily compress the sciatic nerve. Unfortunately, pregnant women have a limited number of options for dealing with sciatica, as medications can cause damage to the fetus. However, she may be able to find relief from a heating pad. State of the art infrared technology is now being shown to provide superior heat therapy for back pain and sciatica. It allows heat to penetrate deeply into aggravated muscles for long lasting relief. The Healthy Back Institute offers a large variety of infrared heating pads. Visit losethebackpain.com to find one that’s right for you.
Another natural way that may help relieve sciatica that those seeking a more holistic approach may want to try is simple stretches and exercise. Light walking keeps blood flowing, and helps strengthen core body muscles to help support your body from the inside. Stretching helps relieve tension and keep lower back muscles loose to prevent them from becoming a source of pain. When practiced repeatedly over long periods of time, these techniques can even help prevent future injury to the sciatic nerve.
A herniated disc is another way sciatica can occur, and herniated disc sufferers may benefit from natural treatments as well as medications inaccessible to pregnant women. A herniated disc happens when the gelatinous discs between your vertebrae become dislocated or rupture. This misplacement can often put pressure on areas nearby. When it happens in the lower back, often the sciatic nerve is the closest one, which results in sciatica. Someone with a herniated disc can benefit from over the counter pain relievers like Ibuprofen and Aleve. The anti-inflammatory medications help to reduce swelling, which can relieve pressure on the affected area. Additionally, cortisone injections help speed medication directly to the damaged site which helps relieve pain and promote healing.
Concentrating on standing up straight is something all sciatica sufferers can benefit from. Being aware of the spine’s normal “S” curvature, and working to maintain that throughout the day and night, is important to improving and preventing severe sciatica. At night, resist the urge to pile pillows under your head. One pillow is enough to maintain a natural position for your head and neck. If you’re uncomfortable, try putting another pillow under your knees to relieve pressure on your lower back. During the day, you may want to invest in a lumbar support cushion to help you sit up straight. Sitting for long periods can make it difficult to keep that “S” shape in your spine. Hunching over your desk is easy, especially after you’ve been working for several hours. Here’s where a lumbar support cushion – like the ones available through The Healthy Back Institute – can help. They work by helping support your lower back and relieving pressure on sensitive areas. Some also have a built in massager to melt away muscle tension and increase blood flow to promote healing.
The Healthy Back Institute understands how uncomfortable severe sciatica can be. They strive to provide back pain sufferers with the latest and greatest products and techniques for relieving sciatic pain. Visit their Web site at losethebackpain.com today to get on the road to being pain free.
Written By: Updated: June 30,2011