How to Manage Sciatica with Chiropractic Treatments

Sciatica is characterized by radiating pain, numbness or weakness that extends from the lower back down the legs. Chiropractors can offer a variety of treatments to help alleviate and manage sciatic nerve pain.

The first step is to review the patient’s medical history and perform a thorough physical examination.


The sciatic nerve is the largest in the body and runs from your lower back down to your legs. This nerve is prone to irritation when something such as a herniated disc or bone spur presses on it, which can cause pain in the low back and buttocks and then extend down your leg. Sciatica may also cause numbness and tingling. Fortunately, there are many nonsurgical treatments that help manage sciatica and relieve pain. These include chiropractic manipulation and other natural practices, such as stretching.

Stretching for sciatica helps with pain relief by loosening muscles that have tightened over time or are causing pressure on the sciatic nerve. Some stretches are more effective than others, depending on the severity of your symptoms and the source of your sciatica. For example, if you have sciatica caused by poor posture, you can get a lot of relief by doing a simple stretch that is easy to do while standing or sitting: Place one foot flat on the ground and bend your knees so that your upper body is leaning forward over your bent leg. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Repeat on both sides to improve your posture and ease your sciatica.

Other sciatica-related stretches include the seated glute stretch and the sitting spinal stretch. With the latter, you start by lying on your back with your legs extended straight out in front of you. Slowly bring your left ankle on top of the right knee and then bend over to your thigh, using your arm for support. This stretches the upper back, and it also stretches the spine. Another great stretch for sciatica is the piriformis stretch, which stretches the buttocks. The sciatic nerve runs directly through this muscle, so if it becomes too tight, it can cause discomfort.

Adding more movement to your daily routine, including walking, swimming and light strength training can help to reduce your sciatica pain. It’s best to start with low-impact aerobic exercise and then gradually increase how long you work out. You can also use a TENS unit to help manage your pain and relax your muscles. Adding ice and heat treatments can help as well by increasing or decreasing your blood flow and relieving muscle tension.


Sciatica is a very common condition that impacts four in ten people at some point. It happens when the large sciatic nerve, the largest in the body, becomes irritated or compressed and causes pain to radiate from your lower back through your buttocks, hip, and into each leg. This pain is often sharp or shooting in nature and can feel like a jolt of electric pain.

This type of back pain is usually caused by herniated discs in the spine, bone spurs, or other health issues causing compression of the sciatic nerve. Fortunately, chiropractors can provide immediate drug-free relief for sciatica through spinal manipulation and massage therapy.

Spinal manipulation is a gentle, non-thrusting type of chiropractic treatment that restores movement to the vertebrae and joints in the spine. This helps decrease the pressure on the spinal nerves and reduces pain in the lower back, buttock, and legs.

In addition, chiropractors often incorporate massage into sciatica treatments to loosen up the larger muscles in the back and hip that may be tight or spasming. This will help to reduce pain and also decrease the likelihood of future herniated discs.

Chiropractors will also use exercises and lifestyle advice to help strengthen the spinal support muscles. This will make it less likely that a herniated disk will slip and cause long-term sciatic nerve irritation.

Sciatica can occur due to a variety of reasons ranging from a herniated disk in the spine, bone spurs, or tumors. This is a condition that can affect anyone of any age and gender.

If you are experiencing the telltale symptoms of sciatica including pain that radiates from your lower back through the buttock and into each leg, call our office today to schedule an appointment. We can diagnose the problem and help you get back to living your life again. We can also refer you to a physical or occupational therapist, and provide other home care tips that can decrease your sciatica pain. This includes stretching and taking breaks when sitting during the day to prevent aggravated sciatica pain. We can also recommend ice packs or cold massage to decrease pain and control inflammation.

Heat/Cold Therapy

Sciatica is a condition that causes radiating pain, numbness or tingling from the lower back down the buttocks and legs. A chiropractor can provide several treatment options for the symptom, including chiropractic manipulation, massage and ice/heat therapy. These treatments will also help strengthen the core muscles that support the spine, as well as improve flexibility and range of motion in the back and leg. In addition, chiropractors, like the Glendale chiropractors, can refer patients to other healthcare professionals, such as physical therapists or pain management specialists, for a comprehensive approach to managing sciatica symptoms.

Cold therapy is typically used during the first few days of a sciatic flare to reduce inflammation and ease the pain. For this, you can use a frozen gel pack or a bag of frozen vegetables (but be sure to wrap the ice pack in a towel to prevent frostbite). Apply the cold for 20 minutes at a time several times a day, or as needed to relieve pain.

Heat therapy can help ease muscle stiffness after the inflammation has resolved. You can use a heating pad or long-lasting heat wraps, as well as taking a hot bath or shower. This will widen the blood vessels in the area, which usually promotes circulation and reduces stiffness. For maximum effectiveness, you should alternate between cold and heat treatments several times a day.

Spinal manipulation is one of the most common and effective chiropractic treatment techniques for sciatica. This procedure involves the chiropractor applying a controlled force to specific spinal vertebrae or joints in order to restore movement to these areas and alleviate pressure on the sciatic nerve. The chiropractic adjustment can be performed manually, or with an instrument called the activator method, which uses a handheld device to deliver a low-force impulse to the spine to restore movement.

Sciatica is a painful condition that can cause serious damage if not treated properly. Many people ignore this type of back pain, but it is important to recognize the symptoms and seek proper treatment as soon as possible. In many cases, the sooner the symptoms are treated, the quicker the condition will resolve and the patient can return to normal life activities.

Nutritional Counseling

Sciatica is a debilitating condition that causes lower back pain and shooting leg pain. It occurs when the rubbery discs in the spine, called vertebrae, herniate and compress the spinal nerve. A herniated disc can be caused by a wide range of conditions such as spinal stenosis, pregnancy and being overweight. Sciatica pain can be reduced by doing a few simple things at home. These include taking over-the-counter medications, avoiding sitting or standing for long periods of time, and stretching to reduce tension.

Regular chiropractic treatments can help prevent sciatic pain by ensuring the spinal column is properly aligned and free of excess pressure. The chiropractor will use a combination of techniques including spinal manipulation, joint mobilization, and massage therapy to relieve the pain. In addition, they may also use heat and cold therapy, ultrasound, TENS units, acupuncture, and stretching exercises to improve flexibility.

Proper diet can also play a significant role in managing sciatic pain. Eating foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins and minerals, can reduce inflammation in the body. In addition, it is important to avoid inflammatory foods such as processed sugars, salty foods, and unhealthy fats that can cause the flare up of sciatic pain.

Many people who suffer from sciatica experience recurring flare-ups of the pain that can lead to an inability to work or live normally. To help prevent flare-ups, it is important to make sure that you are eating a well-balanced diet and that you are staying active.

Chiropractic is a natural form of medicine that has been shown to be effective in reducing sciatic pain and improving overall function. It involves adjusting the bones and joints in the body to restore proper movement, relieve pain, and improve the communication between the nerves.

If over-the-counter pain killers and heating packs are not helping, you should consider scheduling a visit with your local chiropractor for a full exam of your sciatica pain. Your chiropractor can recommend a treatment plan that will address your sciatica pain and help you return to a healthy lifestyle. They will take into account all of your needs and will develop a plan that will be best for you.

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