Sciatica is a very painful condition that occurs when the sciatic nerve is compressed or pinched. It can also be caused by a herniated disc or a bone spur on your vertebrae. When this occurs, pain radiates down the path of the sciatic nerve. The pain associated with this condition makes walking painful and can affect your quality of life. However, our chiropractors at Spine One Center can treat sciatica and the symptoms associated with it.
Who Is at Risk for Sciatica?
While anyone can have sciatica, there are risk factors that can increase your chance of developing this condition, including:
- Age: As you age, changes can occur in your spine, causing herniated discs and bone spurs.
- Occupation: If you have a job that requires you to twist your back or carry heavy objects, your risk for sciatica increases. The same is true if you spend your work day driving.
- Prolonged sitting: People who spend most of the day sitting at work or who live a sedentary lifestyle are at greater risk for sciatica than active people.
- Obesity: If you are obese, there will be excess pressure on your spine. This may trigger changes in the spine that can cause sciatica.
- Diabetes: Diabetes increases your risk of nerve damage, which can increase your risk of developing sciatica.
Symptoms of Sciatica
Sciatica causes pain that radiates from your lower spine to your buttocks and down the back on one of your legs. The pain can vary from a mild ache to a sharp, burning sensation. The pain often worsens when you cough, sneeze, or sit for long periods of time. Some people with sciatica say that the pain is similar to an electric shock. In some cases, numbness, tingling, and muscle weakness in the leg and foot can occur.
Sciatica can be diagnosed during a physical exam. Our professionals will need to test your muscle strength and your reflexes. We will ask you to rise from a squatting position and to walk on your toes and heels. Finally, our chiropractor will have you lie on your back and lift your legs one at a time. Our experts will have you perform these activities to determine which ones make your pain worse.
We may also order an X-ray to check for a herniated disc or a bone spur that could be compressing the sciatic nerve. We might also order an MRI or a CT scan to gather more information.
Treatment for Sciatica
In the early stages, you might try pain medications, muscle relaxers, steroid injections, or anti-inflammatory medications to help with sciatica. Unfortunately, these are just temporary measures and often have side effects. If you want a more long-term solution to your pain, our chiropractors can help.
If your issue is due to a herniated disc, our chiropractors can perform an adjustment to put the disc back into position, which will take pressure off the sciatic nerve. An adjustment can also realign misaligned discs that are pressing on the sciatic nerve.
Visit Our Chiropractors
If you are suffering from sciatica, we can help. At Spine One Center, serving Egg Harbor, Atlantic, Northfield, and Cherry Hill, PA, we can offer you pain relief and long-term solutions. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, call us today.