The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the body that run from the hips, deep into the buttocks, down the back of the thigh, and branches off to into smaller nerves. These smaller nerves provide feeling to your legs and feet as well as control the movement of the lower legs. The name sciatica derives from the name of the nerve and the pain that travels along it.
This shooting pain travels down the nerve to your feet. and is caused by pressure on the nerve usually from a herniated lumbar disc. Another cause is from piriformis syndrome, where the piriformis muscle that lies on top of the sciatic nerve becomes tight or goes into spasm and puts pressure on the nerve. Sitting down with a wallet in your back pocket for extensive amounts of time can put the spine out of alignment and cause sciatica.
Suffers often feel numbness, tingling, and muscle weakness on the affected leg as well. The pain experience can vary from mild to extreme discomfort and usually worsens over time. Sudden movements such as coughing or sneezing, as well as sitting can aggravate the pain. In instances, the pain can feel like an electric shock.
Chiropractic Treatment of Sciatica
Chiropractic care in conjunction with stretching and trigger point therapy at the piriformis muscle can often relieve the pain and pressure on the nerve. If the piriformis is found to the reasoning of the pain a trigger point injection may be performed to stop the spasming of the muscle. An injection of anesthetic is injected directly into the piriformis in this extreme case.
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