Symptoms and treatment for sciatica explained by our osteopath
Most people know someone who has had it; they bend over to pick something up, and then, boom! They are hit with sudden back pain that causes shooting pain down their leg.
Sciatica is a condition that causes discomfort, tingling, and numbness along your sciatic nerve; this is a long nerve that runs from the lower back down through the hips, buttocks, and legs. The sensation occurs when the nerve is compressed or irritated, often due to a herniated disc, bone spur, or spinal stenosis. Recognising the symptoms of sciatica is crucial for timely diagnosis and effective management.
If you have recurring sciatica, it is worth booking an appointment to see our team at Rakhee Osteopathy. Our osteopath London will be able to offer you deep tissue massages that will minimise the sensation and discomfort caused by the sciatica, which will enable you to get on with your daily life free from discomfort. Great!
So, what are the symptoms of sciatica that you need to look out for? In this article, our osteopath London explores common symptoms of sciatica and discusses ways to find relief.
Persistent lower back discomfort
One of the primary symptoms of sciatica is intense pain in the lower back. This pain typically originates in the lumbar spine and radiates down through the buttocks and legs. The discomfort may vary from a mild ache to a sharp, debilitating sensation. It is important to note that sciatic pain usually affects only one side of the body, so if you have this sensation (usually after exercise or bending over), contact our osteopath London.
Leg pain and numbness
Sciatica often causes pain and numbness along the sciatic nerve pathway, which extends from the lower back to the foot. The pain may travel down the back of the thigh, calf, and foot. It can manifest as a shooting pain, a persistent ache, or a burning sensation. The affected leg may also experience tingling or numbness, leading to weakness or difficulty moving the leg or foot.
Buttock and hip pain
The sciatic nerve passes down the buttocks and hip area, so it's common for sciatica to cause pain in these regions. This sensation ranges from mild discomfort to a sharp, stabbing sensation, and it may worsen with prolonged sitting or standing, and it can be particularly aggravated by movements like walking or climbing stairs. If you notice these symptoms, it is important to seek urgent medical help, especially if the discomfort prevents you from sleeping.
Sciatica can lead to muscle weakness in the affected leg, as the compression of the nerve disrupts the signals between the brain and leg muscles, resulting in weakness. This weakness may manifest as difficulty in lifting or moving the leg, a sense of heaviness, or even an impaired ability to walk properly.
Worsening symptoms with certain activities
Individuals with sciatica often experience an exacerbation of symptoms during specific activities. Coughing, sneezing, sitting for extended periods, bending forward, or lifting heavy objects can intensify the pain and discomfort. The increased pressure on the sciatic nerve aggravates the symptoms, making these activities particularly troublesome.