Many people all over the world suffer from back pain, and one of the more common causes for habitual back pain is sciatica. Sciatica is the term used to describe the condition affecting the sciatic nerve that runs down the lower back and through the hips. The primary cause of this type of pain is a disc in the lower back becomes herniated, which occurs most often in pregnant women or during childbirth. There are soft discs that fit snugly between the vertebrae of the spine. When these discs move position, they become herniated. Herniated discs can occur anywhere along the spine. However, if they occur in the lower spine, they may cause excess pressure on the sciatic nerve. If you’re living with sciatica, there are some do’s and don’ts to help you avoid further injury and pain.
Lifting Objects to Help Avoid Back Injury
While curing sciatica can be a time-consuming process, there are some things you don’t need to do while you’re recovering. No one likes lifting heavy objects, and people suffering from sciatica are no different. However, people suffering from sciatic need to take extra care when lifting an object of any weight from the floor. Having proper lifting technique will help prevent flare-ups of pain and additional injury.
To properly lift an object from the ground, keep a straight back and bend your knees to reach the object. Once you are able to hold the object, hold it firmly in both hands and use your legs, not your back, to stand up straight. It may seem like a strange technique if you have been lifting objects differently your whole life, but lifting this way makes your legs take the brunt of the weight rather than your back.
Strengthen Your Back Muscle to Prevent Sciatica
Part of the reason this pain occurs is because a person’s back muscles are not strong enough. Of course, if a person already has sciatica, they need to be careful not to overwork themselves. However, light exercising to strengthen the back muscles can make all the difference. Some of the best exercises to perform when you have spinal pain are body weight exercises, which means you won’t need to go out and buy an expensive set of weights.
Epic Healthcare & Physical Medicine’s favorite exercise is called the sitting pigeon. To perform this exercise, lay on your back on a flat surface. Next, you’ll begin to raise one leg in the air trying to reach your knee to your chest. You can use both arms to support your leg as you lift. Next, turn the foot of your lifted leg so that the sole points across your leg on the ground. Then, bend the opposite leg’s knee and place it underneath the lifted leg’s foot. Hold for a moment and do the same with the other leg.
Avoid Sitting at a Desk All Day
In the modern age, it can be difficult to not sit at a desk all day, however, sitting at a desk is one of the main causes of pain flare-ups in sciatica sufferers. Fortunately, there’s no need to sit at a desk all day any longer. Today, you can purchase special chairs designed to help people with back problems or even get a desk that you can stand up at. Either option is great for those who suffer with back pain. A well-designed chair will help you have the correct back posture and standing at a desk rather than sitting can relieve pressure from your back.
Stop Smoking to Slow Sciatica
We all know that smoking is related to lung cancer and other horrible disease, but did you know it causes sciatica too. This is because smoking actually deteriorates the discs in your spine over time. At the early stages of disc degeneration, you may not even be aware of it. However, over the course of time, disc generation can lead to herniated discs anywhere along the spine. These herniated discs may occur in your lower back, especially if you sit at a desk all day. To avoid more back pain, it’s best to quit smoking as soon as possible.
Chiropractors Can Aid in Your Fight Against Back Pain
Though there are many ways to prevent sciatica pain, one of the most effective methods is physical rehabilitation. The most common way people go through physical rehabilitation with all types of back pain is with the help of a chiropractor. Chiropractors can help sciatica patients live a less-painful and healthier life with the use of chiropractic techniques.
Fortunately, Epic Healthcare & Physical Medicine has got you covered! Our experienced team can guarantee to help ease your pain with proven methods. While many people may reach for pain medication, we believe they should be reaching out to us. We have had many patients come in with sciatica pain, and we’ve helped them. We’d love to help you too!