Sciatica disables millions of Americans each year.  Sciatica is an issue caused by a problem with the sciatic nerve, which runs down the lower back and down the back of the legs.  When there is an injury or pressure on the sciatic nerve, it can cause pain in the lower back, hips, buttocks and legs as well as numbness, tingling and weakness.  Many people refer to sciatica as “radiating pain” down one leg, which can be extremely debilitating and painful.

The Cleveland Clinic released an excellent report that states that the “good news” about sciatica is that “Nearly 90 percent of sciatica patients do not require surgery.  Most people simply need time, medication and physical therapy”.  Physical therapy is helpful when it comes to improving our bodies overall mechanics and surgery should be the last resort.  In addition to physical therapy, studies show that applying heat and ice, massage, manipulation and acupuncture can help relieve sciatica’s symptoms.

One of the aggravators of the sciatic nerve is sitting because it puts extra stress on your back and sciatic nerve.  Your physical therapist will help teach you how to sit with proper posture to prevent the compression of the nerves in your spine.  Walking short distances, the use of anti-inflammatories and certain stretches can also help relieve symptoms.  Rest assured that if you are experiencing sciatica, there is a pain-free light at the end of the tunnel.