Sciatica Q & A

What is sciatica?

Sciatica is a condition that causes inflammation of the sciatic nerve in your lower back. This nerve travels from your lower back, through your buttocks, thighs, and calves, and ends at your feet. With sciatica, you most often experience pain on only one side of your body, though it’s possible to have pain on both sides.

Signs and symptoms of sciatica include:

  • Buttock pain
  • Back pain
  • Pain, numbness, and tingling in the back of the leg
  • Sharp, shooting pain down the back of the leg
  • Weakness in the lower leg
  • Difficulty walking, sitting, or standing for long periods
  • Pain that worsens when you straighten your leg

Sciatica may be caused by an acute injury or it may be a chronic issue that flares up when you do certain activities, like running, stretching, or sitting for long periods.

What causes sciatica?

Sciatica is caused by any number of conditions that irritate or put pressure on your sciatic nerve. Common causes of sciatica include:

  • Tight muscles
  • Poor posture
  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Piriformis syndrome
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Herniated disc

While some causes of sciatica can resolve by stretching or improving your posture, other causes can trigger constant discomfort. With a thorough exam, your provider determines the cause of your sciatica symptoms and recommends an appropriate treatment strategy.

How is sciatica diagnosed?

The specialists begin your visit with a consultation to understand your symptoms, the severity of your pain, and which activities improve or aggravate your discomfort. They then take you through a physical exam, including a series of stretches and movements to check for tension on your sciatic nerve.

The team also assesses your muscle strength, flexibility, and nerve function to rule out other neurological conditions. They may order X-rays or an MRI if needed. Based on your exam, they go over your diagnosis with you and outline a treatment plan to help you recover.

How is sciatica treated?

Treatment for sciatica depends on your diagnosis. In many cases, chiropractic adjustments and rehabilitation can improve the function of your muscles and joints, restoring normal range of motion and reducing pressure on your sciatic nerve.

Other causes may require more advanced forms of therapy, including low-level laser, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), or spinal stability exercises. If you fail to improve in a timely manner, the team refers you to a specialist in the area for further treatment.

Get relief from sciatica pain from Florida Neuro Pain & Spine Center. Call now or book your appointment online.

Have questions about Sciatica or other pain management issues? Call us, we can help you feel better. (402) 391-7246.

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