Thursday, October 17, 2013
Sciatica is a pain in the butt...sometimes literally. It occurs when there is pressure or injury to the sciatic nerve causing numbness, tingling, weakness or pain down the back of your buttocks and legs. It usually starts gradually and is made worse by long periods of sitting or standing.
Sciatica is usually the byproduct of another problem. At Christopher Chiropractic, our doctors focus on finding misalignments of the spinal bones in the low back and pelvis that can place pressure on the nerves that make up the sciatic nerve. By removing the misalignment and restoring normal motion to those joints it can help remove the pressure from sciatica nerve and alleviate the symptoms of sciatica.
Another cause of sciatica may be piriformis syndrome. The piriformis muscle is located in your buttock. Prolonged overuse of this muscle from abnormal joint movement in the hips, from exercise, or from trauma can cause the muscle to compress the sciatic nerve leading to sciatica. Seeing your chiropractor to make sure that there are no misalignments in the pelvis, getting a massage to make sure that the piriformis muscle is as relaxed and loose as possible, and stretching are all possible ways to help manage sciatica caused from piriformis syndrome.
Below is an example of a simple stretch that focuses on the piriformis muscle. As always consult your healthcare provider before performing and stretches or exercises. If you experience any pain or discomfort while performing a stretch please stop immediately:
Piriformis Stretch: Sit in a firm chair with your knees, hips and ankles bent at 90 degrees. Slide out to the edge of the chair. Bring your ankle to your opposite knee and let it relax. Keep the back straight and lean forward for 10 seconds. Rest for ten seconds and repeat three times. Then, do the stretch with the other leg.
If you have questions about chiropractic or massage therapy, feel free to call Christopher Chiropractic at (606) 549-4811.