What Causes Sciatica?
An estimated 40% of American adults experience sciatica at least once in their lifetime. The older you get, the more likely you are to experience this uncomfortable condition. You’re especially at risk if you regularly experience lower back pain. Luckily, a chiropractor can provide effective sciatica treatment to alleviate your discomfort and the likelihood of recurrence.
Common Causes of Sciatica
The sciatic nerve is the body’s longest nerve, running from the lower back down through the legs. Sciatica happens when pressure is placed on this nerve. This can happen for several reasons, including:
- Vertebral misalignment: Your spine is comprised of bony vertebrae, which protect the spinal cord. The vertebrae are stacked on top of one another to create a subtle "S" shape. If these vertebrae become misaligned, they may put pressure on the surrounding nerves.
- Herniated disc: The spine’s vertebrae have gel-like discs between them, designed to absorb shock. The discs have a tough outer shell and jelly-like interior. If the outer shell ruptures, this jelly-like substance can protrude, pressuring the sciatic nerve.
- Spinal stenosis: This condition occurs when the spaces in the spine narrow, placing pressure on the sciatic nerve. It generally occurs with age-related wear and tear and is common in individuals with osteoarthritis.
How a Chiropractor Can Help
Sciatica symptoms usually appear on only one side of the body, affecting the hips, buttocks, and legs. Common symptoms include a burning pain that radiates from the lower back down the buttocks and leg, tingling or numbness in the affected leg, and muscle weakness.
If you start to notice these symptoms, see a chiropractor for sciatica treatment. Following a thorough diagnosis, they can treat the underlying cause of your condition. Spinal decompression can treat herniated discs, while spinal adjustments correct subluxated (misaligned) vertebrae.
Sciatica Treatments in Beckley, West Virginia
You should never ignore sciatica symptoms, which may worsen if left untreated. Additionally, in rare cases, sciatica may result from pressure on the sciatic nerve due to a tumor—a cause you’ll definitely want to rule out. The team at Integrity Chiropractic can diagnose the cause and provide a fitting sciatica treatment plan.
The easiest way to schedule an appointment is by giving us a call at (304) 252-3333. You can also request an appointment online.