Sciatica Causes And Treatment Options
Sciatica is a common type of pain affecting the sciatic nerve, which extends from the lower back all the way to the back of the thighs and down through the legs. King Chiropractic, which has offices in Gaithersburg, Potomac, Urbana, and Clarksburg, MD, offers treatments for sciatica. Read on to learn about sciatica causes and treatment options.
Causes Of Sciatica
1. Lumbar herniated disc
The bones that form the spine in your back are cushioned by spongy discs. When these small discs are healthy, they act as shock absorbers for the spine and keep the spine flexible. But when a disc is damaged, it may break open or bulge. This is called a herniated disc. Sciatica is the most common symptom of a lumbar herniated disc.
2. Degenerative disc disease
Degenerative disc disease describes the breakdown of an intervertebral spinal disc. For some individuals, one or more degenerated discs in the lower back can irritate a nerve root and cause sciatica. Degenerative disc disease may result in neck or back pain. In some cases, you may have tingling or numbness in your leg or arm.
3. Bone spurs
A bone spur is a growth that forms on the joints in the back. When a bone spur is impinging on a nerve in the spine, it can cause pain, tingling, weakness, or numbness in the legs and feet. Bone spurs may press against a nerve, resulting in sciatica.
4. Lumbar spinal stenosis
Lumbar spinal stenosis commonly causes sciatica due to a narrowing of the spinal canal. This happens when tissue, bone or both grow in the openings in the bones. This growth can irritate the nerves that branch out from the spinal cord. The result can be numbness, pain, or weakness in the legs, buttocks, and feet.
5. Other causes of sciatica
Other causes of sciatica include injury and infections in or around the lumbar spine. Sometimes sciatica can occur because of irritation of the sciatic nerve during pregnancy. Excess body weight can also contribute to the spinal changes that trigger sciatica.
1. Transcutaneous nerve stimulators
Transcutaneous nerve stimulators (TENS units) are sometimes useful for chronic forms of sciatica. Transcutaneous nerve stimulators use low-level electrical currents to relieve sciatica pain.
2. Steroid injections
In some cases, your doctor might recommend an injection of a corticosteroid medication into the area around the involved nerve root. Steroid injections help reduce pain by suppressing inflammation around the irritated nerve. The effects usually wear off in a few months.
3. Spinal adjustment or manipulation
Chiropractic and physical therapy can take pressure off your spine and reduce inflammation.
Sciatica can significantly diminish a person's quality of life. There's no need to suffer. Call King Chiropractic at 301-926-5200 to schedule an appointment in Gaithersburg, MD. Call 240-403-7103 to schedule an appointment in Potomac, MD. Call 301-874-9002 to schedule an appointment in Urbana, MD. Call 240-745-2151 to schedule an appointment in Clarksburg, MD. You have nothing to lose but your pain!