What is sciatica?
Sciatica is a common musculoskeletal problem that causes pain in your lower back, buttocks, legs, and hips. It occurs when your sciatic nerve becomes compressed due to a herniated disc, bone spur, or the narrowing of your spinal column.
Sometimes, sciatica occurs due to an acute injury like an automobile accident or slip-and-fall. Other times, it strikes suddenly for no reason at all. Factors that may increase your risk of experiencing sciatica include obesity, weak muscles, or having legs of varying lengths.
What are the symptoms of sciatica?
Common symptoms of sciatica include:
- Low back pain
- Numbness that extends to your legs or feet
- Loss of sensation
- Difficulty controlling the muscles in your legs or feet
Some people with sciatica describe their pain as electric or shock-like. If your symptoms interfere with your ability to work, exercise, or perform other routine tasks, contact the team at the practice of Tyra L Beavers BS, PTA, DC, right away.
How is sciatica diagnosed?
To diagnose sciatica, the team at the practice of Tyra L Beavers BS, PTA, DC reviews your health history and asks about your symptoms and lifestyle. They then conduct a physical exam, assessing your muscle strength and reflexes. Next, you perform a series of in-office exercises, including walking on your toes, squatting, and lifting one leg at a time.
If a visual observation isn’t enough to pinpoint the source of your discomfort, the team might also order diagnostic imaging like X-rays. This special X-ray can determine if there is a leg length difference. If your legs are of different lengths, the team develops a custom protocol that combines chiropractic care with custom orthotics.
How is sciatica treated?
Treatment for sciatica depends on the severity of your symptoms and their effects on your quality of life. At the practice of Tyra L Beavers BS, PTA, DC, the team recommends drug-free, non-surgical treatments that support a healthier spine.
For example, they can normalize your spinal alignment through chiropractic adjustments and custom orthotics, allowing your sciatic nerve roots to function properly. You might also benefit from exercise programs like yoga or Pilates which can help strengthen your core muscles and improve your posture.
If your symptoms continue to persist, the team might recommend integrative nutritional services. Healthy eating can help you lose weight and encourage good musculoskeletal health.
To receive treatment for sciatica, request a consultation at the practice of Tyra L Beavers BS, PTA, DC. Book an appointment online, or call the office to speak with a member of the staff today.