What is Sciatica?

Sciatica is a condition where pain from the lower back radiates along the leg causing pain, weakness, and numbness in certain cases. The pain is radiated when the sciatic nerve is compressed, irritated, or inflamed due to various reasons. Sciatica usually appears only on one side of the body causing trouble in walking, sitting, or doing daily activities. 

Reasons for Sciatica

Some of the main reasons for Sciatica includes an irregularity in the spinal discs. Degenerated/ herniated disc, spinal stenosis, or muscle spasm could have resulted in pain in the sciatic nerve. However, very rarely there might be chances of tumors or other underlying disease. 

Home Remedies for Sciatica

  • Over-the-Counter Drugs

Pain killer pills prescribed by your general practitioner are really helpful in easing the pain and reducing inflammation if any. In most cases, these over-the-counter medications help you get back to your everyday activities without much strain.

  • Stretching

Stretching works wonders for Sciatica. Since the nerve pain is mostly due to disc compression/ strain, stretching your hips and leg muscles help in relieving the pain that radiates along the leg. But make sure you don’t overstrain the muscles which can sometimes lead to further complication. 

  • Keep Moving

It is very important to get good rest when you are recovering from sciatic pain. But it is also paramount to keep walking and start doing mild activities that don’t cause much strain. This will help you recover faster than sitting idle for long periods of time. 

  • Warm/ Cold Compress

A warm compress can help relax the strained sciatic nerves and muscle cramps if any. Similarly, a cold compress can ease the pain caused by inflammation in the spine or lower back. Consult your doctor regarding which compress works best for you and how long it is advisable to place the particular compress on the affected area. 

  • Gentle Exercise

If you are someone who exercises regularly, sciatic pain shouldn’t stop you from your daily routine. Gentle exercises involving your leg and lower back help recoup the tissues aiding faster recovery. 

Sciatica rarely needs major medical intervention. While most of the time non-surgical treatments such as physiotherapy and acupuncture may be advised, there  may be situations that require surgery. Whatever the severity of the pain is, it is always advisable to consult a doctor to rule out complications relating to Sciatica. 

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I'm Vannessa, a certified masters in curating unique diet plans specializing in nutrition, weight management, stress management etc. I was formerly a member of Healthline's dedicated research team and was recognized as one of their top writers for a decade.I am also actively participating in several health forums, including MomMD and MedHelp.I'm passionate about helping people achieve optimal health through strength training, mindfulness techniques. My articles and guides offer a blend of research and practical strategies to support your specific needs. Let's work together to unlock your full potential for a healthier life.I postgraduated my degree in Advanced Food Safety from Queen's University Belfast. (https://www.qub.ac.uk/)