Having sciatica pain can make daily activities like sitting, walking and standing very uncomfortable. You may experience pain in your lower back, legs, hips and buttocks. Pain killers may provide temporary relief but what other things can you do to ease the pain?

What is Sciatica?

Sciatica is a term given to describe irritation of the sciatic nerve. This is the largest nerve in the body, running from the lower back to the buttock, down the leg and into the foot. Anyone can get sciatica but the condition usually effects the over 40’s or those whose jobs require working in physically awkward positions. It is a painful condition but in severe cases it can cause muscle weakness and problems in walking.

Common Causes

  • A bulging disc in the lumbar spine
  • Inflammation
  • An Abscess
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • In older people – spinal stenosis

Symptoms

  • Pain in the buttock
  • Muscular weakness
  • Gait dysfunction
  • Oedema
  • Lower limb pain
  • Numbness or tingling or burning sensation

What can be done?

Massage therapy can help ease the pain through relaxing the tight muscles and improving blood circulation. Having tight back muscles can create pressure on the sciatic nerve so massage can really help loosen and stretch these muscles. Just by using simple effleurage and petrissage strokes along with gentle massage is maybe all that is required to help relieve the pain. But while hands on treatment can be helpful what else can you try?

Try the following which should give you some instant relief

  • Simple stretches for the lower back and legs
  • Continue with everyday activities
  • Taking regular exercise
  • Yoga or Pilates
  • Using heat or cold pain relief
  • Gentle Massage
  • Acupuncture
  • Herbal Remedies for pain relief
  • Talk to a qualified osteopath or chiropractor

I’m afraid treatment is often a process of trial and error and finding the right one for you, but just because you have sciatica it doesn’t mean you have to stop doing the activities that you love. The emphasis for any sciatica treatment should be using the body properly and strengthening exercises should avoid worsening symptoms.