Sciatica refers to back pain caused by a problem with the sciatic nerve. This is a large nerve that runs from the lower back down the back of each leg. When something injures or puts pressure on the sciatic nerve, it can cause pain in the lower back that spreads to the hip, buttocks, and leg. Up to 90% of people can recover from sciatica without surgery.
The most common symptom of sciatica is lower back pain that extends through the hip and buttock and down one leg. The pain usually affects only one leg and may get worse when you sit, cough, or sneeze. The leg may also feel numb, weak, or tingly at times. The symptoms of sciatica tend to appear suddenly and can last for days or weeks.
Most people who get sciatica are between the ages of 30 and 50. Women may be more likely to develop the problem during pregnancy because of pressure on the sciatic nerve from the developing uterus. Other causes include a herniated or degenerative disk and piriformis (muscle) tension on the sciatic nerve.
How Our Chiropractors Can Help
Head and neck injuries will frequently lead to a misalignment in the upper neck where the spine and skull meet. This area is called the Atlas vertebrae and is crucial to the alignment of the rest of the spine.
As the Atlas tilts or twists due to trauma the weight of the head shifts from the center. Once the weight of the head is not properly centered over the spine the rest of the spine will begin to compensate and twist and turn in order to adapt to the position of the head. This causes an imbalance of structures from side to side and can cause an abnormal muscle tone, abnormal pressure on one side of the disc, as well as irritation to the nerves including the sciatic nerve coming out of the lower back.
This is frequently why sciatica can be so difficult to treat because of the symptoms being far away from the cause.
Pierce Chiropractic Center uses a revolutionary healthcare procedure that focuses on the Upper Cervical Spine. This procedure identifies subtle misalignments of the top vertebrae in the neck and corrects them using a light-force instrument adjustment. We have success in treating patients with sciatica by not only balancing the structures of the body but also assigning specific stretches that will help take tension off of the sciatic nerve.
Injections, surgeries and other treatment modalities focused on the lower back will not be successful if the cause of the sciatica is a misalignment of the upper neck.
From One of Our Patients
I could not speak higher of Pierce Chiropractic Center. The staff is extremely pleasant and informative, the facilities are first rate. I suffered from chronic lower back pain for years from a tennis injury and thanks to them I have not had an issue in nearly a year.
- Michael M.