Sciatica symptoms can range from an infrequent tingling sensation in your lower back to constant severe pain traveling down the backs of your legs. Dr. Chad Young is a highly-skilled chiropractor at Young Health USA in Mayfield, Kentucky. He has extensive experience in diagnosing and successfully treating the underlying nerve irritation responsible for your sciatica. Call Young Health USA today to make your appointment, or use their online scheduling service.
Sciatica Q & A
Young Health USA
What is sciatica?
Many people mistake sciatica for a disorder when it’s actually a symptom of sciatic nerve compression and irritation. The sciatic nerve runs from both sides of the lower spine to the buttocks and travels down the backs of your thighs to your feet. It’s the largest nerve in the body, and it connects your leg and foot muscles to your spinal cord. Pain and symptoms of sciatic nerve compression and dysfunction are referred to as sciatica.
What are the symptoms of sciatic nerve problems?
More commonly occurring in one leg, but also possible on both sides, sciatic pain is sometimes stabbing, burning, or electric-like. It can come and go or remain constant throughout the day. It’s often better with walking or lying down and worsens when you stand still or sit. The pain typically starts in the lower back region and travels down the affected side of the buttock and into the leg and foot.
Other symptoms of sciatic nerve compression may include:
- Pressure in the lower back area
- Numbness in the buttock or affected leg
- Tingling or prickling sensation down the leg
- Weakness or giving-way sensation in the affected leg or foot
What causes sciatic nerve compression?
Issues known to cause sciatic nerve pain include misalignment (subluxation) of lumbar vertebrae, herniated or bulging discs, pregnancy, and childbirth. Frequent constipation and incorrect sitting posture can also lead to sciatic nerve compression or irritation.
Another common cause of sciatic nerve pain is piriformis syndrome. It’s named after the piriformis muscle that’s located near your lower spine. This large muscle connects to the thighbone and assists in hip rotation. The sciatic nerve travels beneath the piriformis muscle.
Injury during a fall or having a condition such as hip arthritis can cause cramping and spasm in the piriformis muscle. This can pinch the sciatic nerve and create inflammation and pain.
What is the treatment for sciatica?
Dr. Young first determines the cause of your pain through physical examination, X-rays, and other diagnostic studies.
He may recommend several different treatments to relieve your pain and address the underlying cause of your symptoms, including:
- Ice/cold therapies to reduce inflammation
- Electrical nerve stimulation to control pain and decrease muscle spasm
- Ultrasound therapy to increase circulation to the region and reduce swelling, cramping, and pain
- Spinal adjustments to restore alignment of vertebral bodies, increase range of motion, and reduce nerve irritation
Sciatica symptoms can range from an infrequent tingling sensation in your lower back to constant severe pain traveling down the backs of your legs. Dr. Chad Young is a highly-skilled chiropractor at Young Health USA in Mayfield, Kentucky. He has extensive experience in diagnosing and successfully treating the underlying nerve irritation responsible for your sciatica.