What Is Sciatica, and How Is It Treated?

Nov 04, 2022
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Back pain is very common. Sciatica is a specific kind of back pain caused by compression of the sciatic nerve from arthritis, disc herniation, injury, or tissue inflammation. Sciatica can be quite uncomfortable, but it’s usually only temporary.
Sciatica is a common type of lower back pain that travels down into the buttocks, thigh, lower leg, or foot.
It’s usually on one side of your body. It’s caused by compression or irritation of the sciatic nerve.
What is the treatment for sciatica?
The first step for treating sciatica involves some simple but effective home remedies:
- Heat or ice packs may help.
- Over-the-counter pain medications, like Tylenol and Motrin, can ease pain and inflammation.
- Lidocaine patches can help some people.
- Keep moving as much as possible, as too much time in bed can make things worse.
- Avoid prolonged sitting or standing.
- Stretching, light exercise, and maintaining good posture can help ease pain and prevent future episodes of sciatica.
If your symptoms do not get better with these treatments, then you have options:
- Prescription medications, like muscle relaxants, pain medications, steroid pills, or nerve pain medications
- Physical therapy
- Massage
- Spinal steroid injections
- Spine surgery For most people (nearly 90%), sciatica gets better with non-surgical treatments and time.
If your pain doesn’t get better within 6 weeks, you may need to make a medical appointment to check for other causes of back pain.
See us at Harlandale Clinic if you think we can help.