Sciatica is a condition that is mostly easy to identify. A lot of times what people think is back pain is actually sciatica related. Now you might be wondering what sciatica means. Sciatica is the name of the longest body nerve. This nerve starts from the lower back to the body sides where they split up. From each side, it goes down towards your hips and feet. The condition sciatica, attacks this sciatica nerve, causing pain.
Sciatica happens as a result of irritation in the lumbosacral and lumbar region. Some people may get sciatica by stenosis of the lumbar spinal. This stenosis is the narrowing of your backs’ spinal canal. Other causes include spondylolisthesis and degenerative disc illness. It can also develop from common causes like regular wearing of high heels, insufficient exercise, laying on the wrong mattress (some mattresses can trigger this condition), and movement. People with sciatica should avoid doing these things as they can intensify the pain.
Sciatica usually has simple symptoms that are easily identifiable. The followings are some of the obvious telltales indicators that will let you know if you have sciatica or not:
- Pain at the lower back
- Pain in the butt or leg especially when you sit
- Hip pain
- Burning or tingling sensations in the leg
- Numbness and weakness in the leg (difficulty in moving your foot or leg)
- Shooting pain, which makes it difficult to get on a standing position
Sciatica pain generally affects one body side and the other is exempted. This makes it even easier to identify sciatica. For example, if you experience the above-named symptoms on your left side alone, it suggests that you have sciatica.
Sciatica pain normally runs from the lower part of your back to the mid-thigh. If the pain location is different a little bit, it may extend to your toes and foot.
Thankfully, sciatica treatment can be carried out at home or without surgical interventions and therapies that do not require drugs. A good treatment option is physical therapy, your physical therapists can draw out a customized treatment plan for you which will include exercise and stretching that will help the nerve.
Another treatment option is exercise. You might be wondering how you could exercise in pain. The truth is that sciatica is improved faster when you move your body. A fitting exercise example is to engage in walking, the low impact kind. You can do this on your thread-mill or outside. However, it is best to start your exercise with a doctor or physical therapist guidance.
You should also avoid being on long hours of bed rest as it may worsen your overall condition. Sitting down also increases pressure on the discs which will worsen sciatica. Bed rest will not help or speed up sciatica recovery.
Consulting a chiropractor will help prevent its recurrence. A chiropractor will help relieve tension, pressure, pain, and inflammation. A plan may be created to meet your personal needs and avoid the recurrence of sciatica. By the first visit to a chiropractor, you can almost immediately feel the benefits and get straightforward help.
While following the laid out adjustments from your chiropractor, he/she may assist you in establishing a strengthening, and stretching workout schedule.
Foam Roller For Sciatica
The foam rolling technique is an often-overlooked treatment option for sciatica. But it has proven to be effective for many. This technique is a kind of self-myofascial relief that helps pain connected with fascia tightness. Foam rolling helps in releasing tightness, muscle knots, and tension.
It is usually advised that you start slow when foam rolling, don’t go hard on your body by applying high pressure. Doing that may even lead to more pain. When you notice a knot, painful or tight spot, gently roll that area some time. You may even decide to just hold the roller over that painful spot. By doing this, the knot or tension will be released and you will be relieved almost instantly.
Vibrating foam rollers can provide a deeper and more instant relief to muscle tightness and tension in the hip, lower back, butt, and leg.
Seven Foam Roller Exercise To Relieve Back Pain
Trying out either or all of these seven exercise plans may help ease your back pain.
- You start this by lying with your face down on the foam roller. It should rest below and underneath the left hip.
- Position your right leg at a ninety-degree angle to the side and place both forearms as weight support on the floor right in front of you.
- Straighten your left leg behind leaving your toes untucked and start taking small side by side and back and forth movements.
- Once you feel a tight spot, hold still for about twenty to thirty seconds. Repeat this procedure on the right leg.
2. Stretch from knee to chest
- Lie flat on your back, bending both knees and placing your feet on the floor.
- The foam roller should be kept directly underneath your sacrum.
- Clasp your hands at the back of one knee and draw it to your chest without lifting your hips.
- This stretch helps to relax thighs, glutes, and hips.
3. Pigeon stretch
- Start on a high position with your foam roller placed horizontally beneath your torso.
- Pick up your left leg and bring forward your left shin. Line your knee behind the right wrist. You should adjust the roller so it stays beneath your hips.
- The right leg should be positioned straight at your back. Place both hands on your roller and raise your chest.
- The roller will press into your left glutes. Hold the position for thirty seconds.
4. IT Rollout
- Lay sideways on your roller resting it below your left hip.
- Straight the left leg. Bend your right knee and place your left foot forward of your left thigh.
- Lean on your left palm, so the right foot and left arm control the weight placed in the roller.
- Roll slowly towards your knee.
- Hold and stop at uneasy places, then continue rolling towards the knee.
5. Piriformis stretch
Here is one stretch that works on the piriformis muscle found in the buttocks. It relieves buttocks tightening and pain in the lower back.
- Sit on the floor with the hip placed against your foam roller from behind.
- Cross your right leg over the left and lean fully on the hip, making contact with your roller.
- Then roll forth and back slowly.
- If you get to any discomfort spot, pause for about thirty seconds. Then switch legs and continue.
6. Hamstrings rollout
- Sit with the foam roller in your front. Place both of your hands behind and lean on the back of your palms.
- Place the left leg on your foam roller and allow it to rest above the right knee.
- Cross the right ankle over the right by applying pressure on your left hamstring.
- Press your palms in such a way that your hips are lifted and slowly roll it to your glutes. Pause for twenty to thirty seconds at tender spots.
7. Leg raises
This exercise involves you laying on your foam roller and running it along your spine. The knees and feet should both be bent on the floor and support your hip and head with the roller.
While you can try out foam rollers for sciatica pain, these seven exercise poses can also help relieve pain. You could watch instructive videos to understand these exercises better.