Sciatic nerve pain is the pain that we feel in the lower extremity. It happens because irritation of the sciatic nerve. People usually feel the sore from the low back or lumbar area to behind their thigh. Some people feel the sore from the low back until down below the knee. It will bother you every time so you need to do something to get rid of this pain.

Causes and Risk Factors

How could this happen? You need to know that this kind of sore is happen because many factors. First of all, it happens because the sciatic nerve is pinched by a bone spur on the vertebrae. Bone spur is a condition when the bone is over growing. The nerve also can got pinched by a herniated disk in the spine. In some rare case, this condition can happen because of a tumor that pinched the nerve. 

Besides, there are some risk factors that you need to look out for.

Here are the risk factors of sciatic nerve pain:

Age

As we know that our body is change following our age. Herniated disks and bone spurs that cause sciatica could be happened when we getting older. That’s why this pain usually occurs in adults and elderly.

Obesity

Extreme weight gain is not good for your health. When you have obesity, your spine will be stressed. The changes in your spinal could trigger the sore.

Occupation

Your job could affect your health. The sciatic nerve pain could happen to you when you have a job that requires you to use your back. It could happen when you need to carry heavy loads on your back every day because of your job. 

Prolonged Sitting

The sore will come to you when you sit too long. If you work in the office and you need to sit for a whole day, please take some times to stretching. It will help you prevent the sciatica.

Diabetes

People with diabetes have a high risk to feel the sore. Diabetes will affect the way your body consume blood sugar. This condition will increase the risk of nerve damage and cause sciatica.

Symptoms

How do we know that we have sciatic nerve pain? There are symptoms that you will feel. You will feel the pain that come from the lumbar spine. It will radiates to your buttock and the back of your leg. Some people also feel the pain at their knee. 

This sore could be worst day by day if you don’t get right treatment. The pain can change from a mild ache into sharp and could become worse. There will be a burning sensation and excruciating pain. The sore is getting worse when you cough or sneeze. Some people also have muscle weakness in their leg and numbness. 

How long will it take to Go Away

Sciatic Nerve Pain

There are two types of sciatica, acute and chronic. An acute sciatica needs one and two weeks to recover. But there is a case when people have a sciatic episodes. The pain comes several times in a year. Each episode of this pain needs one and two weeks to go away.

How about the chronic sciatica? Chronic sciatica is a life-long pain. People with chronic sciatica may feel the pain for a very long time. But, the sore is often less severe than the acute form. 

Complications

Sciatic nerve pain is a kind of common sore. Everyone can feel the pain. You need to know that a mild sciatica will disappear over time. But, it could be worse and you need to see a doctor. People usually assume this condition as a common pain. They don’t know that the pain can become progressively worse. 

The common complication that could happen is weakness in your affected leg. You can’t feel your affected leg anymore. When it’s going worse, you also loss the bladder function. Please go to see your doctor immediately when you feel these signals. 

Treatment

There are some treatments to cure this kind of sore. Here are the treatments of sciatica nerve pain:

TENS

Transcutaneous nerve stimulators or TENS is the famous treatment for sciatica. TENS units usually used for chronic forms of sciatica. 

Stretching

Exercise can help people with sciatica. They usually need to stretch for a better condition. But, you need to do this kind of treatment with therapist so it will not make your sciatica become worse.

Medications

People who have severe sciatica need medications to reduce the pain. There are some kind of medications that we can use. People usually use anti-inflammatories, antidepressants, and muscle relaxants. Duloxetine and gabapentin also useful to reduce the pain. Cortisone that given orally or by local injection also can be used for relieving sciatica.

Surgical Procedures

When the pain comes from nerve compression at the lower spine, they will choose the surgical procedures. You need to see your doctor first to know if you need surgical procedures or not. This treatment only used for some cases.

How to Prevent

Although there is a treatment but prevention is important. It’s better to prevent sciatica before it comes to you. Here is how to protect your back and prevent sciatica:

Exercise

The first thing you can try to prevent sciatica is exercising. Choose a kind of exercise that you love and do it regularly. Exercise regularly can help you to keep your back and your muscles strong. You can ask your doctor, what kind of exercise that suitable for you. 

Maintain a Good Posture

Every time you sit, please maintain a good posture. A bad posture when you are sitting can cause a bad sciatica. You can use a chair that have a good lower back support and arm rest. You can place a pillow in your back to maintain the normal curve of your back when you sit. Besides, please keep your hips and knees level. 

Move Carefully

We usually don’t care about our body and move carelessly. It’s dangerous especially when you are not young anymore. For the example, when you have to lift something heavy. Please let your lower extremities do the work. You can move straight up and down with bend only at your knees. Avoid lift something heavy simultaneously.

That’s what you need to know about sciatic nerve pain. This pain could happen anytime to anyone. Please do the prevention ways so you can avoid this pain. When you feel this pain, take the right treatment and see your doctor when needed.