Sciatica is the term used to define pain in the sciatic nerve, which happens to be the longest nerve in the body. It extends all the way from pelvis into the hip down the legs, and considering its length, damage to this nerve can be extremely dangerous. Sciatica itself is normally a symptom of a much larger problem in the lower back of the body.
The pain is caused when the nerve compresses or if the piriformis muscle becomes tight or spasms, since the nerve lies directly over it. Compression of the sciatic nerve is most commonly caused by a bulging or herniated lumbar disc, but the pain may also occur in people who keep their wallet in the back pocket and sit on it often.
Some of the most common symptoms of sciatica include:
- Constant pain from the hip, down the length of the affected leg
- Discomfort right after sitting on a chair
- Sensation of a jolt or electric shock in the leg or hip
- Burning sensation or pain in the buttocks
- Numbness, tingling and muscle weakness in the leg
- Sudden pain in the legs while sneezing or coughing
Diagnosis & Tests
In case your sciatic nerve is getting compressed, chiropractic massage is a good way to diagnose the trigger points. An experienced chiropractor will be able to check different pressure points on the leg, and identify the problem. The doctor will also take into account any other factors or medical conditions that may be contributing to the pain.
At Pro Chiropractic Clinics, there are customized forms of treatment available for sciatica sufferers. Stretches will be administered by our chiropractors to relax the leg muscles, and these are followed by deep tissue massage of the piriformis muscle. General chiropractic care offers relief and treatment for the entire leg, in the short run as well as the long term.
Since sciatica is itself a symptom of lower back pain, treatment will normally extend to include lower back pain chiropractic care, spinal adjustments and manipulation, as well as other natural techniques that may be used alone or combined with traditional treatments.