The sharp, shooting pain associated with sciatica typically starts in your lower back. Often, pain will also radiate down your leg at the same time. The discomfort produced by sciatica can be practically disabling, as you struggle to cope.
Sciatica pain is caused by pressure or irritation at your sciatic nerve. This nerve, as big around as a pencil, runs from your lower spine, through your buttocks, and down the sides of your legs on both sides. Different issues around this nerve, most commonly herniated discs and bone spurs, can create intense discomfort or pain, leaving you in need of professional care to keep going with your daily life activities. Sciatica becomes a greater risk with age, but sitting or driving for long periods and lifting heavy weights can also lead to sciatic nerve pain.
At BCS Medical our experienced care team provides support to patients of all ages who are dealing with sciatica. From our Bryan, Texas office, our team can diagnose your sciatica and guide you to the right medications, therapies, lifestyle changes, or other interventions to remedy it for good. Here are some of the options we typically offer to sciatica patients at BCS Medical.
Soothing your symptoms at home
In many cases, sciatica responds to basic at-home measures. You may be tempted to rest during a flare-up, but while some rest can be helpful, a long period of immobility can actually make your symptoms worse.
Instead, use heat and cold to soothe your symptoms. Start with a cold pack, placing it over the affected area for about 20 minutes several times a day. If your symptoms aren’t better in two or three days, switch to using a hot pack. For continuing symptoms, try alternating heat and cold.
You can also try stretching exercises focused on your lower back. Try not to jerk or bounce the affected area, but gently stretch it out, holding the stretch for at least 30 seconds.
Other treatment options
If your sciatica symptoms don’t resolve on their own, it might be time to look into other therapies. At BCS Medical, we often recommend chiropractic care for sciatica patients. With a chiropractic adjustment, the alignment issues irritating your nerves and causing pain can often be resolved. We also offer spinal decompression therapy, gently stretching your spine to reduce pressure on your back and nerves.
We can prescribe anti-inflammatory, muscle relaxant, or other medication as well to support you in coping with sciatica. For serious cases, surgical treatment may be indicated.
Making changes for lasting results
One of the things our team looks at when helping you develop a treatment plan for your sciatica is the lifestyle factors that may be potential fixes for your underlying issues. In addition to corrective exercises, our team might suggest you work on weight loss or nutrition. Addressing your home and work activities can also be helpful. With better ergonomics in your daily life activities, you can reduce stress on your back, taking pressure off your sciatic nerve to stay pain-free.
To schedule your consultation, contact BCS Medical today. We provide excellent care for patients throughout the Bryan, College Station, Texas area. Book your appointment over the phone, or by using the online tool.