Many conditions are common among specific demographics based on age, gender and other factors, but back pain is universally endured by millions for many reasons. Back pain currently affects 540 million people globally of many different age and gender groups, and 8 out of 10 Americans will struggle with it during their lifetime.
A common source of back pain is sciatica (also known as lumbar radiculopathy), a condition marked by pain and tingling that affects the sciatic nerve. This problem can be caused by other underlying causes and there are many ways to treat it depending on what other back issues may be involved. We have several non surgical treatments to manage the symptoms of your sciatica, so let’s explore them by looking at what sciatica is, its causes and symptoms, and the many things we can do to help.
If you live in the Houston or Spring, Texas, area and you’re trying to cope with the pain from sciatica or other back issues, Drs. Billy Cheong, Kesia Broome, Elias Madrid, Theresa Shaw, and the experienced medical team at Elite Spine and Health Center can help you feel better.
Your sciatic nerve is the longest and widest nerve in your body, running from the base of your spine all the way down your legs just below your knee, and sciatica describes pain or other symptoms that affect any part of that nerve. Sciatica is a symptom of other conditions rather than a condition on its own, as several different things can cause pain in your lower back, and because of the size and length of this nerve, the symptoms can be experienced in areas ranging from your lower back to as far down as your feet.
Causes and symptoms
This problem is the result of compression, inflammation, or pinching of the sciatica nerve, which can be caused by a range of different conditions such as a herniated disc, bone spurs, spinal tumors, or even diabetes (diabetic neuropathy can affect the sciatic nerve). Age, obesity, prolonged sitting and occupations that require lots of lifting can increase the risks of sciatica.
The pain you experience from sciatica can be mild, sharp, dull, or aching, and the sensation has been compared to a jolt or electric shock. Coughing, sneezing, and extended sitting can worsen symptoms and it often affects one side of your body. Numbness, muscle weakness, and tingling are also symptoms you can have with sciatica. Most of the time symptoms fade over time, but if you’re experiencing other symptoms like sudden, severe pain, intense numbness or tingling, pain after a violent accident, or bowel and bladder problems seek medical attention as soon as possible.
Nonsurgical treatment options
In addition to individualized exercise regimens we can organize to fit your specific pain needs, here are some ways we can help with your sciatica:
1. Manual therapies
This includes a range of treatments like the Graston technique, myofascial release, and spinal adjustments.
2. Custom orthotics
Orthotic supports can be used to better brace your feet in treating problems in your legs and lower back, and we can customize them to fit your needs.
These electrical impulses are used to increase blood flow in targeted areas to reduce pain and other symptoms.
4. Therapeutic ultrasound
This method uses high frequency sound waves to perform numerous tasks, such as improving blood circulation, reducing swelling, breaking up scar tissue, speeding up healing and relieving pain.
5. Spinal decompression
This refers to several methods we can use to alleviate pain and stiffness in your sciatic nerve without invasive procedures.
6. Intersegmental traction
This process uses a traction table to help mobilize your spine to improve blood circulation and oxygen production in the ligaments, muscles and other parts of your spine.
The pain from sciatica can result from many different conditions, but whatever the cause, we’re here to help. Make an appointment with Drs. Cheong, Broome, Madrid, Shaw, and the team at Elite Spine and Health Center today to get pain relief from sciatica and other lower back problems.