What You Need to Know About Sciatica

Have you ever felt a persistent soreness, tenderness, or swelling around your lower back area. These symptoms might be a result of sciatica. Treatments that do not require surgery are adequate. However, an operation may be necessary in some extreme cases showcased by severe leg fragility.

Read on to learn more about Dayton Sciatica and situations that require an operation.

What is Sciatica?

Sciatica causes pain that affects the lower back area towards the legs caused by compression of the Sciatic nerve by overextended bones or herniated discs. A herniated disc occurs after one of the vertebral discs bursts, confining the nerves. The compressed nerves result in pain and insensitivity on the leg.

Signs and Symptoms of Sciatica

As stated earlier, the pain associated with sciatica is generally soreness along the sciatica nerve, i.e., from your lower back to your leg. It commonly affects one side of your body.

 Patients experience pain varying from insignificant irritation to extreme pain like an electric shock around the muscle area.

When to See a Doctor

Immediately get medical help if:

  • Your mild pain persists for more than a few days or gradually worsens and is too extreme.
  • The pain occurs after a severe bruise from an accident
  • Bowel movement and bladder control become a challenge.

Causes of Sciatica

This condition is usually a result of compression of the sciatic nerve by a dense bone or bulging disc in your vertebrae.

 Diseases like diabetes or tumors can squeeze the nerve, but this is highly uncommon.

Risk Factors

Circumstances that may increase the risk of Sciatica contraction include:

  • Obesity – Increased body weight exerts more pressure on your spine, causing changes that may encourage sciatica
  • Activity – People that are less active and sit for extended periods have a higher risk of developing sciatica
  • Age – Older people have a higher risk of sciatica due to the spinal changes that occur with increasing age
  • Job type – Occupations that require physical labor, i.e., carrying of heavy materials, have a higher probability of getting sciatica
  • Pre-existing Conditions – Conditions such as diabetes increase the risk of nerve damage.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis occurs after a thorough review of your medical history, mainly through physical tests. Further tests may be required. They include:

  • CT scan
  • Electromyography
  • MRI scan
  • X-RAY

Treatment can be in steroid injections and oral medication that aim at pain reduction. Physical therapy is also necessary to improve muscle strength and elasticity, especially around your back area.

 Microdiscectomy occurs in rare cases requiring surgery to remove a part of the bulging bone or disc. This operation can be an outpatient procedure allowing for recovery at home.

Prevention

It would be best if you considered some of these techniques to minimize the risk of contraction:

  • Use your lower body and keep your back straight when handling heavy items.
  • Regular exercise
  • Good sitting postures, especially if it is for long periods

Consult your nearest physician if you are experiencing persistent mild soreness or discomfort around your lower back area towards your legs. Sciatica, when ignored, has been known to cause permanent nerve damage. Check out our website or visit our offices in Dayton, Ohio, for more information.

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