Sciatica is a painful condition resulting from pressure on your back nerves. Sciatica could be the culprit if you live with leg or back pain.
Understanding the signs and symptoms of sciatica is crucial so you can get treatment early on and return to your everyday life.
At Pinnacle Health Chiropractic, Dr. Jason Ablett and the team are specialists in caring for various types of pain, including sciatica. Dr. Ablett is an experienced chiropractor offering customized care for your symptoms.
The facts on sciatica
Sciatica is a broad term that's not simply one specific diagnosis; it's a medical term that describes nerve pain in your back or legs.
Your sciatic nerve is the thickest in your body, and genuine injury to it is rare. Instead, sciatica describes any nerve compression that causes pain in your legs or lower back.
Various conditions can cause problems with the nerves in your back, including the following:
- Herniated disc
- Spinal stenosis
- Degenerative disc disease
- Spinal tumors
Sciatica typically happens in older age, although any adult can get it, especially between the ages of 30 and 50. In younger adults, the cause is typically a herniated disc. In comparison, older adults are more likely to experience sciatica due to osteoarthritis in the spine.
Hallmark signs of sciatica
Sciatica presents differently in everyone, depending on how long they've had the condition and how many nerves are affected. However, there are common pain signs that many people report with sciatica, including:
Severe leg pain
The nerves from your spine branch out and travel down each of your legs, which is why leg pain is one of the typical signs of sciatica. The pain may be in one or both legs and come and go or be constant.
Stabbing or jolting pain
Many people describe the pain of sciatica as a stabbing or jolting pain in the low back or legs. Others liken it to an electrical shock or severe leg cramp that won't go away.
Pain that worsens with sitting
Sciatic pain often worsens when you sit or stand for long periods. It can also become aggravated when you get up to walk or with specific quick movements.
Pain with coughing
Coughing or sneezing can significantly worsen your pain due to the force on your already aggravated nerves.
The pain from sciatica varies from person to person and can be either constant or intermittent. Many people describe the pain as it comes and goes with movement or other things that aggravate your pain.
When you're living with significant pain related to sciatica, it's crucial to seek treatment as soon as you can. Surgery isn't usually necessary if you catch it early on, and Dr. Ablett can treat sciatic nerve pain through several non-invasive techniques, including:
- Manual chiropractic adjustments
- Rehabilitative exercise
- Electrical stimulation therapy
- Fascial release therapy
Dr. Ablett may use just one or several of the above treatments to give you an optimal outcome. He often wants you to attend regular appointments to keep sciatica at bay. You'll need to continue treatment until your pain subsides.
If Dr. Ablett can't relieve your pain through non-invasive methods, he refers you to a specialist who can get to the bottom of the underlying problem.
If you're struggling with back pain or sciatica, don't hesitate to call our office today to consult Dr. Ablett or schedule an appointment online using the booking tool.