Sciatic pain or sciatica is something many of us will experience at one point in our lives.
The name itself tells you that sciatic pain affects the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve is the biggest nerve in the body. It starts from both sides of the lower spine, goes through the buttocks and in the back part of the thigh and finally ends to the foot. The sciatic nerve plays a major role in maintaining the strength, sensitivity and movement of the legs.
Sciatic pain is very often neglected and not treated properly because we mistake it for something else. Its symptoms are weakness, numbness in the lower limbs, pain and tingling in the legs so many people who experience these symptoms think they are just having leg cramps.
In some cases, sciatic pain leads to numbness and mild pain, but in other cases, people experience very strong, sharp, burning sensation in one side of their body.
Such unbearable pain forces them to spend their days laying down not being able to move. Or they use whatever drugs come to their hands in order to relieve the pain, for instance ibuprofen.
According to a research, 40 % of the population in the world will suffer sciatica pain at one period during their lives.
Here is some good news. You don’t have to rely on drugs in order to treat sciatic pain properly. There are some other natural ways to achieve the same or even better results.
Acupuncture is a method of inserting thin needles at a certain parts of the body in order to cause a response from the nervous system. Thus the body releases the hormones enkephalins and endorphins which are natural painkillers, increase the flow of the blood to the aching area and cause relaxation in the muscles which surround the painful part of the body.
The positive results from the acupuncture are felt even after the first session and after several treatments you’ll feel like a whole new person.
These days acupuncture is a very popular alternative method in treating different ailments like stress and chronic headaches. Acupuncture can also help you give up smoking and stimulates the lymph flow.
- Chiropractic Adjustments (Spinal Manipulation)
A chiropractor can be very helpful in treating sciatica. These chiropractic adjustments shouldn’t be painful and are proven to be a really effective and safe method in restoring the misaligned vertebral body in its position. The spinal manipulation of the spine can treat inflammation, reduce pain, enhance healing, improve mobility and improve function.
- Ice Packs
Put some ice packs or bags with frozen peas in a piece of cloth or a towel and wrapped them up. Put them on the painful area and leave them for about 20 minutes. Repeat this every 3 hours and the pain will subside.
- Alternate the Temperature
Placing ice packs or ice bags directly on the painful area will do a quick relief of the pain, but it won’t cure the pain deeply. So for better results you should place hot packs after the cold packs or you should have a warm bath.
This alternation of the temperatures will stimulate blood circulation and lymph flow. This way inflammation will be treated and the healing will be much faster. You can also add some essential oils or herbs to your bath if you like.
- Mild Stretches or Yoga
Regular stretching or yoga can be very helpful in improving mobility, strengthening the muscles and boosting blood circulation.
At first even mild stretches will be painful, but in order to achieve results you must be persistent and do them at least three times a week. The same results can be achieved with yoga. But start with something easier first.
Sciatica can be also treated with trigger-point therapies or deep massages. For even better results, essential oils and herb-infused oils should be used in the treatments. Soon you’ll feel relieving of the pain and reduced numbness in the lower limbs.
- Essential Oils and Herbs
The nature blessed us with a lot of herbs which can be very helpful in treating pain and reducing inflammation. You can use the herbs either through capsules, infused oils, liniments and salves or in essential oils, tinctures or elixirs.
Fresh or dried herbs are not only delicious when added in our tea they are also very strong alleviators of the pain. If you are taking some medications, before using any herbs, you should consult your doctor which herbs won’t interfere with their effects.
Here’s a list of some of most beneficial herbs which you can use to reduce pain, inflammation and improve the health of the nerves:
- Devil’s claw
- Clary Sage
- Roman chamomile
- Turmeric or curcumin (mixed with black peppe)
- Mullein root
- John’s Wort
- Milky oat tops
- White willow bark
- Linden flower
- Jamaican dogwood
- Good Night Sleep
Good night sleep is important for our overall health, relaxation of the muscles, strengthening and rebuilding of the nerves.
Though some of these alternative ways of reducing sciatic pain haven’t been confirmed by science so far they have been proven effective to many individuals. A lot of people have said that these methods helped them reduce cramps, pain, spasms and numbness in the lower limbs.
However if you have been experiencing some of the symptoms, which we said are connected with sciatica, for a longer period of time, then you should consult with your doctor because you may have another condition which pressures the nerves. For example a dislocated vertebrae, for which another therapy or perhaps surgery is the right solution.