Back Pain and Sciatica

Back Pain and Sciatica can be sudden, a slow progression, acute, chronic or a mix of all four. Symptoms may include numbness or sudden shocks of sharp pain in the back or down the legs.

It may even be difficult to weight-bear on one leg.

Back Pain and Sciatica symptoms may improve with appropriate rest and postural advice. This does not necessarily mean that the spinal joints have recovered their previous mobility.

Treatment to restore joint and disc mobility is recommended to limit the likelihood of recurrence.

Muscle relaxants and anti-inflammatories can help in the acute stage, as can warmth.

Dos & Don’ts

Try not to sit if you are in acute pain; much better to lie down and walk around occasionally. Worse still is sitting with you feet up. It may feel like it relieves the discomfort in the short-term, but it will generally aggravate the symptoms when you stand and worsen the condition overall.

Take some anti-inflammatories, unless you have been advised not to by your GP or pharmacist.

As the pain settles try some gentle knee rolling movements (side to side) lying on your back. If comfortable, then try a gentle yoga stretch called the ‘cobra’ following the ‘knee rolls’.

Degenerative and Bulging Discs

Damage or deterioration of the spinal discs can involve a loss of disc height and shock absorption qualities.

Additionally, the softer material of the discs can bulge out of its normal position (slipped disc). This maybe due to hereditary factors, poor sitting postures, incorrect lifting techniques, injuries, such as falls off horses or ladders or car accidents.

It is a misconception that cheap or poor mattresses give you Back Pain and Sciatica. They may aggravate a pre-existing condition, but an expensive mattress is no substitute for having your back assessed and treated properly.

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