Sciatica Treatment in CT & NY

A sciatic nerve, the longest and widest nerve in the body, runs from the lower back, through the buttocks, and down each leg before ending just below the knees. These nerves control the muscles in the lower legs and supply sensation to the feet. Sciatic nerve pain, or sciatica, is the medical term used to describe the pain resulting from the irritation of one of these nerves. It usually occurs when a herniated disc or bone spur in the spine presses on the nerve.

Symptoms of Sciatica

A person with sciatica may experience one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Lower back pain
  • Pain in the buttocks or leg that worsens when sitting
  • Hip pain
  • Burning or tingling down the leg
  • Weakness, numbness or difficulty moving the leg or foot
  • Shooting pain down the leg

Causes of Sciatica

The irritation of the nerve is most often caused by the compression of the nerve in the lower spine because of a slipped or herniated disc. When the disc is pushed out of place, it can exert pressure on the sciatic nerve.

Other causes of sciatica include:

  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Trauma
  • Muscle spasms

Treatment for Sciatica

The treatment recommended for patients is determined by the underlying cause. A combination of techniques usually provides the best results. Along with bed rest, some cases of mild sciatica will respond to self-care measures that include walking and stretching exercises, as well as alternating hot and cold compresses.

Treating chronic sciatica will usually involve a combination of self-care and physical therapy. The physical rehabilitation program will include exercises to improve posture, strengthen the lower back muscles and improve flexibility. Alternative medical practices can also reduce pressure on the nerve and control muscle spasms. These include chiropractic treatmentsacupuncture and massage therapy.

More information on the causes and treatments for sciatica.

At Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation of NY & CT, we offer a variety of personalized treatments to help you find relief. To learn more about which treatment is right for you, schedule an appointment today!