What’s Sciatica?

Sciatica typically means discomfort or changed sensation in the back that refers into the leg, knee and foot, though each person’s symptoms may differ a little. There are different causes of sciatica:

*Irritation of the Sciatic Nerve (one of the thickest nerves in the body) by compression of surrounding muscles

*Compression of the nerves that supply the leg and low back as they exit the spinal column by disc bulges, bony growths or fibrotic ligaments

*Damage of tissues like muscle, ligament, bones or tendons in the low back which can then refer pain down into the leg

*Additional causes include issues with abdominal and pelvic organs and veins but in comparison to the other causes these are extremely rare

Because sciatica is virtually always accompanied by back agony there are similar risk factors for both low back Pain and Sciatica:

A sedentary approach to life is a great predisposing factor for several reasons, when someone is sitting for lengthy periods they’ll be supporting the weight of their trunk, shoulder and head typically on the lower back and pelvis. This leads on to a position where a relatively little amount of tendons, muscles and ligaments are supporting a significant component of your body weight. Because the body favors loads to be spread around so loads are shared, prolonged sitting can lead to over load of areas of tendon, muscles and ligaments which means they get materially fatigued and are not as good at supporting you afterwards.

Smoking is a predisposing factor due to the damaging effect on veins. This increases swelling in the body and over time can lessen the amount of blood brought to a damaged area by lowering the flow through damaged vessels.

Folks working in jobs that call for frequent lifting who have not been taught (or do not use) correct strategy are also at bigger risk.

Treatments include Chiropractic, Osteopathy, Physiotherapy, Acupuncture & Massage.

Analgesic treatments can be effective at relieving pain in a number of cases.

Joshua Moffat is an Osteopath working in a specialist Sciatica centre in Bedford. He spends almost all of his working day precicely diagnosing the reason for a person’s sciatica and then helping them to absolutely recover from the problem.

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