What to Know About Sciatica Provided by a Woodland Park, NJ Chiropractor
When your symptoms of sciatica, you may not be able to partake in your usual daily activities like you once did. You might not be able to smile and laugh as much as you used to because of the pain you feel in your back. Fortunately, a chiropractor at Northeastern Spinal Health & Rehabilitation, serving Woodland Park, NJ, and the nearby region, offers various chiropractic care treatments to aid in reducing your pain and other discomforts.
Definition of Sciatica
Sciatica itself is not a condition. Instead, sciatica is a term that a chiropractor or practitioner uses to describe the pain and other nerve-related symptoms that arise from an issue with your sciatic nerve.
You should understand that sciatica is an issue that stems from damage or an injury to your sciatic nerve. This nerve starts at your lower back and extends to your buttocks, hips, and down both legs. As a result of the damage to this nerve, you may experience sciatic nerve pain, among various other issues.
Symptoms of Sciatica
As the largest nerve in your body, the sciatic nerve may affect your hips, buttocks, legs, and lower back. You may have weakness, pain, numbness, or burning in any of these areas. If these symptoms affect your legs, you will notice the discomfort in the back of your legs.
The pain of sciatica may be merely a mild ache. However, for some people, the pain is a sharp, intense, or even excruciatingly painful. You might even feel as though you are experiencing an electric shock or a jolt. Sometimes, your symptoms will worsen when you sneeze, cough, or sit for prolonged periods.
Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve becomes pinched, usually by a herniated disk in your spine or by an overgrowth of bone (bone spur) on your vertebrae. More rarely, the nerve can be compressed by a tumor or damaged by a disease such as diabetes.
What Causes Sciatica
Most commonly, sciatica happens when you pinch a nerve, which typically happens as the result of a herniated spinal disc. A bone spur could also place pressure on your sciatic nerve. Although it is rare, diabetic neuropathy can damage your nerve, or a tumor may press against your sciatic nerve.
Age is a common reason why you will have a bone spur or herniated disc because your back's bones change as you age. Obesity can also increase your risk of sciatica since the excess weight can cause changes in your spine. If you have a job that consists of you carrying heavy loads, sitting for long periods, or twisting your body, your risk of sciatica is higher.
Fortunately, a chiropractor offers natural chiropractic care techniques that reduce sciatic nerve pain by relieving pressure on your sciatic nerve. For instance, spinal alignments or decompression can help.