Sciatica | Leg Pain | Lower Back Pain
“Sciatica” is the medical term for the leg pain, or lower back pain, that commonly starts at your lower back and runs down your leg. It may also be diagnosed as a lower extremity radiculopathy or a lower extremity neuritis. This basically means that pain is running down your leg. While sciatica is normally felt as leg pain, you could also be experiencing sciatica as an aching, burning, numbness, or even a tingling. The sciatic nerves come out from the lower back and run down the legs. These nerves also go into the muscles, so people will experience things like muscle weakness while walking or bending, or similar things to that effect.
The sciatic nerve is made up of 5 different nerves that exit from the lower back, they run through the buttock area, the mid-buttock area, and then they run down the back of the thigh, then down into the lower part of the calf area, and all the way into your feet and toes.
Symptoms of Sciatica
- Lower back pain
- Leg pain
- Aching legs
- Burning legs
- Numbness in the legs
- Tingling in the legs
- Weakness in your leg muscles
While sciatica can cause pain to radiate from your lower back all the way to your big toe, it may also be isolated to just a portion of that area. Symptoms may range from leg pain throughout your entire leg, to an isolated pain in your buttock or an ache in your lower back, or maybe just numbness in your big toe. So, I get people that come in with numbness in their big toe and think there is a problem with their toe, but it’s actually a problem with interference of the sciatic nerve coming out of the lower back that has caused their big toe to be numb.
Some of the Causes of Sciatica Pain
- A common cause of sciatica pain could be misalignments of the spine (subluxations), when the bones in the spine are misaligned this can put pressure on the nervous system.
- Disc degeneration: The disc is like a little cushion or shock absorber in between the bones and separates the bones. If the disc degenerates it could put pressure on one of these nerves or multiple nerves and as a result cause a sciatica.
- Lower back or lumbar arthritis, or osteoarthritis.
- A disc bulge, a disc herniation, or a disc protrusion: This is when the disc is presses backwards putting pressure on the nerves as they exit in between the bones.
- Tightness of the piriformis muscle: A piriformis muscle spasm or hypertonicity. Hypertonicity means spasm of the muscle.
Sciatica may manifest itself through other symptoms. This is because these nerves that come out just don’t go down into the legs, these nerves can come up from the lower back, and also come forward into the organs so people can see things like constipation, incontinence, infertility, leg edema or leg swelling, urinary problems, erectile dysfunction, menstrual problems, and things like that. The sciatic nerves come out from the spine and go to the organs too.
As chiropractors, obviously our main focus is on the spine and the nervous system. Your nervous system comprising of your brain, your spine cord, and all the nerves that exit in between the bones. So as chiropractors our main focus, or our first goal, is to find the underlying cause of the sciatica and figure out exactly what is creating the problem. Then determine what is the best way to actually correct the underlying cause of the problem, taking the pressure off the nervous system so not only does the symptoms disappear, but also so that the body and the nervous system functions the way it’s made to function.
Kempsville Chiropractic has had great success over the years in helping relieve sciatic pain and restoring proper function. Sciatica is not something you should just take pain medication for and hope that it goes away. Sciatica can be very successfully treated through chiropractic care. Once we discover the cause of your sciatic pain, we will work with you to bring relief from pain through proper chiropractic care.
Please call us at 757.467.5258 to arrange an appointment with Kempsville Chiropractic so we may help you deal with sciatica. You can also contact us using our appointment form. If you find this article helpful, please recommend it to your friends and family.
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