The best way to alleviate sciatica pain—which begin in your lower back and get worse as it shoots down the back of your thigh—is to care for the primary condition that’s causing it. But if you experience an unexpected sciatica pain and require instant pain relief, try out these tips in addition to discussion with your doctor.
The initial line of action for a sciatica pain frequently consists of nonsurgical methods such as heat treatment, cold treatment, and pain medications.
Need Specialized Help to Manage Your Sciatica?
Submit your name and email, and we'll get back to you quickly!
Apply Heat or Ice
For a lot of individuals with sciatica pain, having heat or cold therapy on hand is the initial line of defense. Heating pads and ice packs are reasonably inexpensive, easy to carry, and can provide pain relief in a pinch.
When sciatica pain begins, wrap up ice in a cloth or towel and put it on your lower back for about 15 minutes. This may decrease local swelling and ease the sharp pain. If your skin begins to feel numb, take away the ice pack right away.
To apply heat therapy, place an electric heating pad or hot water bottle next to your lower back, buttock, or the back of your leg for 10 to 20 minutes. The warmness dilates blood vessels, escalating blood flow and calming your muscles, so you may experience less pain and find it easier to stretch or use afterward.
You may want to alternate heat and ice treatment to see which brings you the most relief.
Stretch Your Hamstrings and Do Low-impact Aerobic Movements
An exercise program that is modified to the original cause of sciatica pain can help to decrease pain and give conditioning to stop future flare-ups.
It may appear counter intuitive, but resting for more than a day or so doesn’t make sciatica pain leave. Stretching and exercising, then again, can increase blood circulation to the upset areas and help reduce your pain.
If you do not habitually stretch your hamstrings, they can become tense and rigid, irritating sciatica pain. One straightforward way to loosen these muscles is to do a seated hamstring stretch.
To start, sit on the border of a chair with 1 foot flat on the floor and the other legs unbend out in front of you with the heel on the floor. Then crease up, keeping your shoulders and head vertical, until you feel a moderate stretch at the back your leg. Hold for 30 seconds.
Low-impact aerobic exercise can free endorphins and decrease the swelling around your sciatic nerve roots. Taking a walk around your neighbourhood or on a treadmill, with short walks and a vertical posture, is a straightforward place to begin. A lot of people with sciatica pain furthermore find relief when they attempt aquatic therapy.
Exercises that support your core can also do well for you, as these muscles hold up your spine and help care for you from injury when twisting or extending. A stronger centre may help stop or lessen sciatica pain in the future.
Take Over-the-Counter Sciatica Pain Medications
Your pain is probably due to swelling of the sciatic nerve, and over-the-counter anti-inflammatory remedies, such as ibuprofen (e.g., Advil, Motrin) and naproxen (e.g., Aleve), be capable to reduce the swelling and reduce the pain. Discuss the benefits and disadvantage of a variety of over-the-counter medications with your doctor or pharmacist previous to using them, and always follow the directions on the label.
Give Yourself a Massage
When sciatica pain hits, you probably can’t get an instant massage therapy meeting. You can, on the other hand, provide yourself a relaxing massage by means of a tennis ball.
To try out this DIY massage, basically lie on the floor and place the tennis ball beneath your buttock or upper thigh, slowly rolling over it until you locate a tender spot to focus on. The tender pressure from the tennis ball may give relief alike to what you would acquire from a typical pressure-point massage. Stop immediately if you feel unexpected pain.
Try Mind-body Techniques
One pain management alternative involves using the power of your mind to lower your insight of sciatica pain. Mind-body techniques, which consist of deep breathing exercises, meditation, guided imagery, and cognitive behavioral therapy, can be useful in relaxing your muscles and, to a degree, increasing your sense of manage over the pain. You may find that these techniques help decrease anxiety and depression often related with chronic pain.
Since your sciatica pain may be triggered by one of many original conditions, it is not likely that all these tips will work for you. If your sciatica pain gets worse and harshly disturb your daily life, check with your doctor about supplementary pain relief options, which may comprise chiropractic manipulation, epidural steroid injections, and more.