5 Ways To Help Prevent Your Sciatica From Flaring Up

Learning how to prevent sciatica flare-ups starts with learning what’s triggering them — and the list of potential culprits may be longer than you think. That’s because sciatica isn’t a condition; it’s a symptom of several other conditions. 

Just as a runny nose may point to a cold, allergies, or a sinus infection, sciatica pain indicates there’s something else going on. Knowing what’s causing your pain is the first step in relieving it.

That’s where we come in. Our team of experienced professionals at reNu Chiropractic Wellness & Injury Center in Newark, Delaware, gets to the root of your sciatica pain and develops a treatment plan that does more than temporarily relieve your symptoms. 

So first, let’s take a look at what might be causing your pain.

Getting to the bottom of your sciatica

Sciatica can stem from a variety of underlying conditions, but they all cause the same problem: They compress the sciatic nerve. This nerve, the longest one in your body, starts in your lower back and extends through your bottom and down your leg. 

If it gets pinched, injured, compressed, or irritated, you might feel the effects anywhere along its route, including your buttocks or leg, which is one of the unique characteristics that sets sciatica apart from other types of back pain.

One of the most common reasons your sciatic nerve might get pinched is a problem with one of the discs in your lower spine. If one of these protective spheres near your sciatic nerve slips out of place, ruptures, or deteriorates, the nerve gets pushed, prodded, and pressed. 

Other potential sciatica compressors include bone spurs, tumors, a misaligned spine, and a condition called piriformis syndrome, where a buttock muscle spasms and irritates the nerve.

Degenerative disc disease and other conditions beyond your control due to age or injury can’t necessarily be prevented, but you can avoid some sources of sciatica. 

Stopping sciatica flare-ups

Now that you know why sciatica happens, you can take steps to avoid the things that trigger it or make it worse. Here are five tips that help you sidestep sciatica.

Empty your pockets

Because the sciatic nerve runs under the muscle in your backside, it can easily be compressed if you sit for long periods of time, particularly if you have something in your back pocket like a wallet or a phone.

Kick high heels to the curb

Stilettos may make your legs look great, but they could also trigger a sciatica flare-up. The angle of the shoe throws your body weight forward and forces you to engage your hips and pelvis to stay upright. 

This unnatural position puts pressure on the sciatic nerve. So sensible shoes can help you avoid unnecessary pain. 

Quit smoking 

Nicotine is known to constrict blood vessels and deprive your bones, muscles, and nerves of essential oxygen and nutrients. This affects your whole body, but where your spine is concerned, it weakens your vertebrae and makes you more susceptible to sciatica.

Drop a few pounds

Being overweight is one of the primary causes of sciatica because it increases the pressure on your lower back. Losing weight can relieve that pressure, enable you to maintain better posture, and decrease general inflammation throughout your body.

Part of your weight-loss plan should include plenty of regular exercise that strengthens the core muscles in your lower back and abdomen. This will bolster the support system around your sciatica nerve.

Don’t tackle sciatica alone

If you just can’t get the shooting, stabbing, shocking pain of sciatica to subside on your own, we’re here to help. 

Our team of board-certified chiropractors and certified massage therapists can relieve your pain through targeted massage, bracing, electrical stimulation (TENS), ultrasound therapy, and cold laser therapy. 

These treatments alleviate most acute episodes of sciatica and allow you to participate in beneficial exercises and stretches that may prevent future flare-ups.

When your sciatica stems from spinal alignment issues, you need expert chiropractic care to safely manipulate your vertebrae and bring them back into balance. This takes the pressure off your sciatic nerve, reduces inflammation, and may resolve the root cause of your pain.

Sciatica can be excruciating, but it doesn’t have to be part of your life. Follow these guidelines to keep the pain at bay, and when you need next-level care, come see us at reNu Chiropractic Wellness & Injury Center to get lasting relief. 

Call our office to schedule an appointment or request one using our online tool.

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