Sciatica is a condition that affects the back and lower extremities through to hips, buttocks, thighs, and legs. It commonly happens when there is a herniated disk or bone spur on the spine. This narrows the spine causing spinal stenosis. The patients experience a dull throbbing pain, inflammation, and numbness in the affected area. The pain can vary from mild throbbing to burning excruciating pain.
Mild sciatica can go away on its own. However, if the condition continues for a long time, you should see a physician. If the pain progresses for the worse, you should seek medical assistance. If you have been in an accident and you experience pain in lower back and legs, have that checked out by a physician. If you experience trouble controlling your bladder and bowels seek medical intervention. If you experience back and leg numbness accompanied by muscle weakness, chances might be that you have sciatica.
A chiropractor can help to manage sciatica. He or she examines your medical history to determine where the condition is coming from. The advantage of seeking help from a chiropractor is that there is no surgery or drugs involved. Chiropractic care aims to boost the body to heal itself.
Chiropractic adjustments vary from minimal force to gentle pressure applied to the vertebrae with precision. These types of therapeutic adjustments aim to realign the spine. It takes the pressure off the sciatic nerve to bring quick relief. In some cases, the chiropractor uses a special technique to realign the vertebrae to relieve pressure. When the pressure is relieved, the body can kick in and heal itself.
In other instances, the chiropractor uses cold therapy to tame sciatic pain. Cold therapy, otherwise known as cryotherapy, uses ice to manipulate pain and swelling. Packing the inflamed area with ice packs to regulate pain, inflammation, and swelling. Cold therapy works by reducing blood flow to affected areas. This therapy is good for joints, ligaments, and tendons. It also helps to reduce muscle spasms and muscle weakness.
The use of ultrasound is also common with a chiropractic adjustment. The chiropractor uses sound waves to penetrate deep tissue and target problematic areas. This kind of therapy helps to increase circulation, eliminate dead cells, encourage healing, and reduce muscle inflammation. It is also good for reducing swelling, stiffness, and cramping.
Heat treatment works by increasing temperature on affected areas to improve blood flow. Applied heat pads help to reduce discomfort, muscle stiffness, tenderness, and fatigue. Heat treatment can be moist heat or dry heat. Dry heat includes heating packs, hot bottles, hot stones, dry heating packs, and sauna. Moist heat includes wet heat packs, hot wet towels, and hot baths. The heat from ultrasound machines is also used to apply therapy to deep tissue and nerves.
Other non-conventional procedures such as acupuncture, cupping, massages, and hydrotherapy are applicable as well. However, you must go to a proper specialist for these services.
For more information on chiropractic care, visit Mission Bay Chiropractic at our offices in San Francisco, California. You can also call (415) 855-4300 to book an appointment with us.