sciatic nerve physical therapy - Avoid the Top 3 Sciatica Mistakes!
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Avoid the Top 3 Sciatica Mistakes!

Because of pain and a lack of understanding of their condition, sciatica sufferers may make some costly long-term mistakes when it comes to handling their problem.

About the Author:

Paul G Miller is a Ft Lauderdale chiropractic therapist who has worked with individuals with back pain problems for seven years.
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 About the Author:

Dr. George Best has been treating people with sciatica and piriformis syndrome since 1992. To receive a free ebook on Sciatica Exercises and a video information program on understanding and managing sciatica, visit his website at .

In addition, these helpful habits may decrease the chances of developing sciatica: ??? Avoid hours of sitting slumped at a computer or standing with a baby on one hip. Both can contribute to lower back pain.

Majority of these patients give a history of lifting heavy weights on their head or back, adopting improper spinal postures while sitting or bending forward, riding two wheelers on bumpy roads, female patients standing for a longer time in kitchens - these all contribute to the unbearable & excruciating pain called Sciatica.

The first mistake is rushing into a surgery. Although the vast majority of surgeons are not anxious to perform surgery on sciatica cases, there are a few who do recommend surgical treatment right from the start, and without even attempting any other type of treatment. Sciatica resolves in approximately 80% of cases without surgery. Even when surgery is successful initially, the development of scar tissue and abnormal mechanical stresses on the spine adjacent to the surgery often lead to future problems. Given that low back spine surgery overall has about a 50% long-term success rate and people treated surgically often wind up worse than they were prior to surgery, it should be reserved as a treatment of last resort.

??? Maintain proper posture and try to stand straight. ??? Wear flat shoes or ones with a very low heel. Avoid shoes that throw your weight backwards.

??? Massage to reduce muscle tension. Some experts believe that tightness in the gluteus and psosas muscles contribute to sciatic pain. Treatment once or twice a week can help relieve stress on weight-bearing joints.

Oral steroids for sciatica are also administered in more severe cases. These prescriptions provide pain relief. But take note that such medications can only be used for shorter periods of time only. Oral steroids for herniated disc include Medrol Dose Pak, methyprednisolone, and Predisone.

??? Bedrest may be necessary at times. ??? See your physician if the pain becomes unmanageable. Sciatica is unique to a pregnancy and may gradually disappear on its own. Just because you had sciatica in one pregnancy does not mean it will appear in a subsequent one.

To avoid the need for ongoing usage of the oral steroids for sciatica, exercises and physical therapies are beneficial and will provide a long term rehabilitation and hopefully a cure for the herniated disc problem. At the start of the program, the physical therapist may apply some modalities like ice or heat compress or ultrasound to decrease muscle spasm.

As the initial sciatica pain sets in, anti-inflammatory medicines may be taken to manage and decrease the pain. Possible medications are ibuprofen drugs such as Nuprin, Motrin, and Advil. COX-2 inhibitors are another option to aid in reducing the pain.

Conclusion The typical and often first recommended sciatica pain relief treatment is simply bed rest. But like any other medical conditions, herniated disc symptoms can be manifested in a lot of different ways, depending on the person and his/her lifestyle specifically related to exercise. In most serious conditions where nothing seemed to effectively work regardless of whatever techniques you applied, injections and oral steroids can be an option and should be explored. Implementing an ongoing system of physical strengthening exercises in conjunction with the steroids will see a remarkable improvement in most herniated disc conditions. Oral steroids for a herniated disc help with the pain and the swelling at the same time. If nothing is working and the pain of the herniated disc persists it may be well worth considering surgery as an option.

Aside from the oral steroids for sciatica, non-surgical treatments are also widely practiced, like physical therapies and exercises, chiropractic manipulation; cervical traction; activity modification, osteopathic medicine, bracing, medications and injections. Medical professionals who can diagnose above treatments are psychiatrists, family practitioner, osteopathic physician, spine surgeons, neurosurgeons, and neurologists- do not trust the judgment of anyone else. Physical therapists and chiropractors may also administer the non-surgical treatments as mentioned in the first part of this paragraph. The oral steroids for herniated disc should only be given by a healthcare professional, and needs to be accurately assessed before commencing.

The decision to undergo surgery however depends greatly on the patients decision, with the help and support of the surgeon or with the attending doctor. It is always best to exhaust all forms of sciatica relief treatments before deciding on surgery.

??? When getting out of bed, try rolling onto your side first, letting the weight of your feet and legs dangling over the edge of the bed, pull your body into a sitting position. This puts less stress on the lower back, helping you to avoid triggering a painful muscle spasm.

The exception to the rule of considering surgery as a last resort is in the rare case of severe neurological compromise known as "cauda equina syndrome", which may be indicated by a loss of bowel and/or bladder control, sudden severe weakness in one or both legs, and/or "saddle anaesthesia" (a loss of sensation in the lower buttocks and inner thighs). Except in the rare instance of cauda equina syndrome though, it is generally better to avoid surgery if possible.

External Therapies: includes the famous Panchakarma & Rejuvenation therapies. Abhyangam, Nadi Swedam, Elakizhi, Pizhichil, Kati vasthi, Matra vasthi and other Ayurvedic procedures are performed accordingly for a period of 7/14/21/28 days thus treating the underlying cause of the disease without any side effects.

Most physicians avoid prescribing medications for pregnant patients suffering from sciatica but there are several steps that can be taken to relieve or decrease the discomfort. This includes:

The second mistake sciatica sufferers often make is returning to normal activities too quickly once symptoms improve. The vast majority of true sciatica cases are due to bulging or herniation of one or more discs in the lumbar spine, and the inflammation that typically is associated with such disc problems. In many cases, slight improvements in inflammation can result in dramatic symptom improvement. Many sciatica victims mistakenly believe they are back to normal as soon as they feel better, but the reality is that the bulging/herniated disc is far from fully healed, and too much exertion too soon can easily trigger a recurrence of symptoms - sometimes even more severe than they were to begin with. Even professional physical therapists sometimes make the mistake of pushing a patient to do too much too soon, with the result being a return or increase in sciatica symptoms.

Ayurveda believes that Sciatica/Gridhrasi is caused by the aggravation of vayu. Sometimes the vitiation of kapha along with vata brings on the attack. At times constipation precipitates or aggravates an attack of sciatica. Ayurveda prescribes the perfect prescription for Gridhrasi. It includes:


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The pain brought upon by sciatica is usually a cause by considerable factors like compressions on the nerve roots, and inflammation of the disc material. It is possible to gain quick relief from such anti-inflammatory medications, as they help to reduce the swelling or the inflammation, therefore, pressure on the nerve roots also will be resolved.

??? Moist heat alternated with ice packs ??? Chiropractic treatments may be helpful. Be sure to select a practitioner experienced in treating prenatal patients.

The third mistake people, including doctors, often make regarding sciatica is to view it as a condition that can be "cured". Because most people continue to engage in the activities that caused the underlying disc problems to develop that produced sciatica in the first place, the vast majority of sciatica sufferers will experience repeated episodes, usually becoming more severe and more frequent over time. This is due to the fact that the disc issues that initially produce the sciatica tend to grow worse over time if they are not managed appropriately. Once again, it is not safe to assume that a resolution of symptoms means that the problem has gone away. In fact, what happens in many cases is that the spine and discs gradually degenerate over time, making the person more and more susceptible to sciatica episodes. Eventually, the degeneration can become so severe that there really is no effective treatment, and many people are left with chronic, debilitating pain.

Imagine the surprise a woman must feel while dealing with the physical symptoms and discomforts of pregnancy, to suddenly develop severe back pain. This is not the usual low back pain that is often experienced during pregnancy; it is sciatica. This sharp, shooting pain usually starts in the buttocks and radiates down the back or side of the thigh to the calf and possibly the heel. There may be paralyzing numbness, in addition to the pain, which can be severe enough to limit mobility.

Fortunately, in most cases, sciatica can be managed effectively simply through an awareness of potentially damaging activities and positions and through simple exercises one can do at home. Long-term pain and disability are avoidable, if one makes the necessary effort to perform the necessary exercise regimen on a regular schedule and to avoid movements, activities, and postions that can be damaging to the discs of the spine, such as incorrect bending and lifting, and poor posture (especially sitting posture). Long-term problems can be avoided by putting forth just a small amount of effort to manage sciatica on an ongoing basis over time.

In the later & complicated stages of Sciatica, the gait of the affected person resembles that of an Eagle's walk & the inflamed nerve appears like Eagle's beak, hence the term Gridhrasi.

??? Swimming and walking are excellent exercises if not contra-indicated by the physician. ??? Avoid walking on an incline as this can cause joint irritation and lead to problems.

The most common causes are Lumbar herniated disc, Lumbar Spinal Stenosis, Degenerative disc disease, Aging, Osteoporosis, Spondilitis, Pelvic Infections, Tumors, Diabetic neuropathies etc.

Sciatica can occur at any time in a normal pregnancy but it is most common during the second and third trimester, when the baby is larger and carried lower in the abdomen. Known as Pregnancy-Related Sciatica, it is caused by the pressure of the baby on the sciatic nerve. This is the largest nerve in the body, about the diameter of a finger. Its fibers branch off the spinal cord at the 4th and 5th lumbar vertebra (L4, L5) and the first few segments of the sacrum.

"We are aimed at Redefining Ayurveda by propagating the ancient traditions of Ayurveda to the modern world, and practicing the Genuine, Shastroktha & Purest form of AYURVEDA from the past 9 years. Today, we are known for conceptualising ayurvedic cures to diseases like sciatica, slip disc, arthritis, spondilitis, herniated disc, degenerative disc etc. which never had a solution other than surgery. For my work in the field of ayurveda I was awarded KRRUSHI RATNA AWARD, AYURVEDA TAPASWI AWARD, VAIDYA RATNA AWARD." Says Dr. Kranthi Vardhan Chief Physician & Managing Director, The Kerala Ayurvedic Care, 3-6-101/1, st no: 19, basheerbagh, Hyderabad-29. For details contact Cell: 98666 66055, 92461 66636 & 66101140 on all days from 8am to 8pm strictly with a prior appointment.

SCIATICA, Gridhrasi in Ayurveda, is a Vata roga, characterized by Sharp Shocking pain radiating from the Hip unto Thigh, Calf or the Toes in one or both the Legs. Numbness, Weakness, Tingling sensation & Discomfort along the path of the Sciatic Nerve are the results of Compression, Irritation & Inflammation of the Sciatic Nerve.

??? Try to avoid significant weight gain. ??? Try sleeping on a firm mattress, lying on one side. A pillow rolled up under the knees may be helpful.

Other non-invasive mode of treatment is the cervical traction in which, it lifts off the pressure on the nerve roots. However, this is not guaranteed to work perfectly well for everybody and is completely reliant on the health condition and age of the patient suffering from the herniated disc. This is however a reasonably simple method to implement. A home traction kit device may be conveniently used by patients who respond positively to this form of treatment, to help them cope with the pain associated with a herniated disc.

Dietary Regimen: Pulses, beans, and fried foods should be prohibited. Curds and other sour substances should be avoided. Saffron, in small quantities, should be mixed with milk and given to the patient to drink. Life style Regimen: Gentle exercise of the leg is advised. Exposure to damp and cold should be avoided. Swimming in warm water is a good exercise for legs. The patient should use a hard bed and wear a lumbo-sacral belt. Yogic exercises like Halasana, Shalabhasana, and Bhujangasana may be undertaken after pain has subsided to prevent recurrence of sciatica. Internal Medications: include many types of Ayurvedic preparations like Thailams, Grithams, Gutika, Pills, Lehyams, Churnams, Asavaaristams & Kashayas are prescribed by a qualified Doctor after a thorough examination of the patient.

??? Williams Exercises have been developed specifically for use during pregnancy. They may temporarily relieve sciatica pain as they help strengthen the muscles of the pelvic floor, the back and abdomen.

As the pregnancy develops, the abdominal tendons and ligaments become looser to prepare for childbirth. The backs of some women become quite unstable and prone to injury. Medical evaluation should always be sought. In some cases, sciatic pain is due to pressure on the nerve that is caused by damage to the disc between the vertebrae of the spine. This creates inflammation and pain and requires specific treatment.

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