Do you experience severe pain in the back of one or both of your legs when you move? If you do, the chances are great that you’re living with sciatica. Caused by pressure or inflammation near the sciatic nerve, this condition makes it impossible to stay as active as you’d like. It can also put a major damper on many parts of your daily routine. Fortunately, sciatica isn’t permanent, and there are plenty of ways for you to ease your discomfort as it heals. Here are some effective tips for reducing pain caused by sciatica.
Improve Your Posture
The way that we sit or stand can affect the amount of pressure we put on certain areas of our bodies. So if you want to alleviate some of your discomfort in your legs and lower back, make sure that you correct your posture. This is especially important when sitting down for long periods. Keeping your back straight with your legs perpendicular to the floor works your back muscles, taking some weight and stress off your sciatic nerve. It can make you more comfortable in the office.
Do Gentle Exercises
Practicing a few low-intensity exercises daily is also an important tip for reducing sciatica pain. Even if it hurts to move, activity is still a vital part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Aerobic exercises, such as swimming, allow you to keep moving while reducing the impact on areas that are sensitive to sciatica pain. Walking and cycling are also great options because they combine low-impact aerobics with cardio for better cardiovascular health.
Use Hot or Cold Compresses
Another way to decrease pain in the sciatic nerve is to apply a hot or cold compress to the area as needed. Cold compresses work well to reduce inflammation of the afflicted tissues, while warm cloths or heating pads decrease tension in the muscles. Using both interchangeably can be a great way to take the edge off your pain and keep you active for much longer. But make sure that you don’t overdo it since this solution isn’t a replacement for professional treatment.
See a Pain Management Professional
If your sciatic pain persists following some at-home remedies, make sure that you see a pain management professional for additional help. You may need to visit a pain management specialist for sciatica, as they can ease your pain much quicker. With their access to advanced medical equipment and years of experience treating this condition, they know what to do to get you the results you want. Their treatment methods are also less likely to result in complications down the line.
Sciatica can be painful, but you don’t need to suffer if you have the right techniques for mitigating your discomfort. Use the above tips to make your daily life a bit more tolerable, and see a doctor for additional treatment advice.