Understanding Sciatic Back Pain
Sciatic back pain is one of the symptoms of sciatica, which is nerve pain from irritation of the sciatic nerve, the longest and widest nerve in the human body. Your sciatic nerve branches from your lower back through your hips and buttocks, down to the back of the thigh and into the lower leg and/or foot, the body areas that experience sciatic nerve pain.
Sciatic Back Pain Causes
Should you put pressure one or more of the sciatic nerve’s roots, you would experience pain in some or all parts of your body where the nerve branches out. With the sciatic nerve starting in the lower back, you will feel pain, should you place pressure there.
One cause of sciatic back pain is a herniated disc, a condition that causes a weakened disc to place direct pressure on the roots in the spinal canal that from the sciatic nerve. Another cause is pregnancy, wherein an enlarging uterus causes direct pressure on the sciatic nerve.
Sciatic pain may also occur when the piriformis (a muscle of the buttocks) pinches the sciatic nerve, thus resulting in a condition called piriformis syndrome. Sciatic pain in the leg is always the result of the pain traveling down to your leg and/or foot, where you will feel tingling, numbness or difficulty moving them. Sciatica in these body parts is made worst by prolonged sitting (especially with a fat wallet in the back pocket) and standing. You can relieve the pain by lying down or walking.
Sciatic Nerve Treatment
It is common for people to recover from sciatic back pain without a surgery. Most of them manage to do so by performing certain exercises and physical therapies recommended to them by physical therapists, chiropractors, physiatrists and certified athletic trainers.
Core muscle strength exercises are designed to strengthen muscle support for the back, while stretching exercises relieve tight and inflexible muscles. Aerobic exercises encourage general body fitness, especially for the body parts that experience sciatic nerve pain. There are also exercise programs that target the underlying causes of your sciatic back pain, such as a herniated disc.
Sciatic nerve treatment would also include ice-pack applications, OTC medications, steroids and complementary therapies. Whatever treatment plan you choose, make sure to visit your physician and physical trainer who will recommend the best treatment for your sciatic back treatment.