Category: Spine | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: September 6, 2022
Your sciatic nerve is the longest nerve in your body, beginning in your lower back and traversing down each leg. Because of its size and the sometimes narrow areas through which it has to traverse, it’s not uncommon for the nerve to become impinged or compressed. When this happens, pain and other symptoms can set in.
Sciatica flareups are quite common in individuals dealing with sciatic nerve compression, and when they occur, patients oftentimes look for quick relief to their discomfort. These methods can be helpful in the short-term, but you also want to consider addressing the issue in the long-term. In today’s blog, we take a closer look at some short- and long-term treatments for sciatic nerve pain.
Short-Term Sciatica Treatments
If you’re dealing with a sciatica flareup and you’re looking for some quick relief, consider these pursuits:
- Stretch – Gentle moving and stretching can help alleviate some symptoms, even if it seems like movement is the last thing you want to do.
- Hot/Cold Compress – Depending on the location of your compression and the symptoms it’s causing, a hot pack or a cold wrap can help temper symptoms and provide some relief. Take a warm bath or wrap some ice in a towel and apply it to the area that’s most uncomfortable.
- Mind Your Posture – Excessive sitting, especially if you have poor posture when doing so, can really increase your risk of spinal degeneration or inflammation that can contribute to nerve compression. Avoid sitting for extended periods, and when you are seated, strive to have ideal posture.
- Anti-Inflammatories – Finally, another short-term fix that can help resolve symptoms is an anti-inflammatory. Over-the-counter anti-inflammatories can help to quell inflammation that could be making symptoms worse, but again, these aren’t something that you’ll want to pursue for the long-term, because they don’t address the root cause of inflammation.
Long-Term Sciatica Treatments
Once you’ve alleviated some of your sciatica discomfort in the short-term, it’s time to pursue some treatments that should help provide some long-term relief. Some of those treatments include:
- Weight Management – Losing weight or working towards a healthy weight will help to take pressure off your lumbar spine, which can help limit stress on the sciatic nerve. Slowly but surely work your way towards a more ideal weight.
- Exercise – Exercise also tends to be a very helpful pursuit in your quest to treat sciatic nerve pain in the long-term. Exercise will make you stronger, reduce your risk of nerve compression from disc problems and help you maintain an ideal weight. Strive for some regular exercise, especially when sciatic nerve symptoms are at bay.
- Talk With A Specialist – Finally, if you really want to make some headway in treating your sciatic nerve issue in the long term, it’s time to connect with a spine specialist like Dr. Sinicropi. We can determine the specific location of your impingement, why you’re dealing with symptoms and develop an individualized treatment plan tailored to your needs. You don’t need to try to address the problem on your own. Instead call in a professional and let us help.
For more information, or for help with your sciatic nerve discomfort, reach out to Dr. Sinicropi’s office today at (651) 430-3800.