Natural Cures for Sciatica

Natural Cures for Sciatica

Natural cures are a great way to save some hard earned money in the treatment of sciatica. Sciatica SOS itself is a natural alternative. Here are some common ways people and experts are using everyday to help treat back and other nerve related pains.

Osteopathy

Osteopathy

Many papers and recent studies demonstrate the effectiveness of osteopathy to relieve back pain. However, very few experts focus on its effectiveness in relieving sciatica in particular. A study was conducted with 40 patients with sciatica caused by a herniated disc. Osteopathy has proven more effective in the short term than the medical treatment of the herniation and an effective medium-term solution.

Peppermint

Peppermint

The German Commission acknowledges that peppermint essential oil applied locally has the power to relieve sciatica. No clinical study does however validate this use.

Dosage: Rub the area with a preparation of essential mint oil (see the Peppermint plug for possible preparations). Repeat as needed.

Common Nettle (Urtica dioica)

common nettle

The use of the aerial parts of the common nettle in external and internal use to relieve arthritic, rheumatic or associated with sciatica pain is well documented and has been used for centuries prior to modern medicine.

Perforate St John’s-wort

St John's-wort

The use of St. John’s wort in the relief of neuralgia dates back to the ancient Greeks.

Furthermore, the effectiveness of St. John’s wort is well known in external application oil to relieve muscle pain. However, these traditional uses have not been confirmed by scientific data.

Dosage: Make a local St. John’s wort oil application, from 1 to 3 times per day. The oil is obtained by steeping fresh flowering tops in olive oil.

Balsam fir (Abies balsamea)

Traditionally, the essential oil of turpentine (different from FIR essential oil, distilled from the needles) was used to relieve sciatica and several other neuralgia. Turpentine is a substance distilled from various conifers including Balsam gum and pine.

Dosage: There are commercial tree gum preparations for topical applications (lotion, oil or ointment), but you can also make an emulsion with 50% vegetable oil and 50% of gum, FIR, or even mix 3 drops of essential oil of turpentine in a little vegetable oil: apply the emulsion on the painful area.

Hanna Somatic Education

The methods of somatic education to realign the structure of the body and develop body awareness. They take into account the whole of the organism by using touch and movements to eliminate tensions. To do this, they have a beneficial effect in the prevention and treatment of sciatica. Among the approaches, the Alexander Technique and the Trager are particularly recommended by experts.

Chinese Pharmacopoeia

Du Huo Ji Sheng Wan (Angelica and gui pills) is prescribed to treat sciatica.

Yoga

yoga

According to Dr. Weil, yoga would be a place of choice in the prevention and treatment of sciatica. By strengthening the back, by relaxing the body and by reducing nervous tension and stress proves to be highly beneficial to the patient.

Sciatica Treatment

Treatment of Sciatica

Important
It is better to stay moderately active when you suffer from Sciatica. Formerly, it was recommended to keep the bed. Nowadays, we know that it brings no therapeutic benefit and that by remaining active, it promotes healing. That being said, if the pain comes to a point where you have to rest in bed, it is fine to do, but not more than 48 hours. If the pain is not relieved by rest or is unbearable, it is better to consult a doctor again.

Sciatica is usually treated well within a few weeks. When the neuralgia is caused by a specific disease, recovery or control by medications typically cause the disappearance of symptoms. In pregnant women, sciatica tends to disappear after childbirth.

Medications to Cure Sciatica

medicines

Various medications can be used to relieve the pain. The first recommended is acetaminophen or paracetamol (Tylenol ®).

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs available over-the-counter also have a pain-killing effect, as well as anti-inflammatory (for example, ibuprofen (Advil ®, Motrin ®) and acetylsalicylic acid (aspirin ®)).

However, they are no more effective than acetaminophen to relieve the symptoms, according to studies.

Moreover, their usefulness in the case of sciatica is questioned. Indeed, most of the time, the inflammation is not in question.

That said, if a proper dosage of acetaminophen does not effectively relieve pain, you can opt for anti-inflammatory non-steroidal and observe if the result is better. Inquire about precautions and contraindications.

If pain is resistant to these drugs, muscle relaxants, anti-inflammatory non-steroidal at higher doses or drugs prescribed by the doctor can be used.

It may also have recourse to local injections of a mixture of analgesics and corticosteroids. You must be aware that these treatments offer relief in the short term, but not for long-term benefit.

Practical Advice
-The most comfortable sleeping positions would be on the side with a pillow between the knees and under the head. You can also lie on the back with the knees and head and shoulders slightly elevated by pillows.

-In the first 48 hours, applying cold on the painful area can alleviate the pain. To do this, use an ice pack wrapped in a towel. Affixed to the painful area for 10-12 minutes. Repeat the application every 2 hours or as needed.

-Subsequently, the heat can be beneficial. It helps to relax sore muscles. Take a hot water bath is ideal. Otherwise, apply several times per day a source of heat (a hot, moist towel or a heating pad).

Applications of heat and cold on sore muscles are used for a long time. However, recent studies cast doubt on their real usefulness to relieve lombaires4 pain. There is more evidence to support the use of heat and cold.

The Benefits of Physical Activities

It is preferable not to cease regular activities for more than 24 hours to 48 hours.

Studies show that people who remain active recover more rapidly. Staying active helps to release tension in the muscles and preserves muscle mass. If the pain is important, resting in bed during one day or two is acceptable.

However, you should resume fresh activities as quickly as possible, as soon as the pain becomes tolerable, because it promotes healing.

When pain is present, it is advisable to limit the daily physical activity and some light physical exercises, such as walking. These soft activities will not worsen the problem.

On the contrary, they are beneficial. Exercise stimulates the production of endorphin, hormones that inhibit the transmission of pain messages.

Subsequently, the intensity of physical exercise can gradually be increased. Swimming, stationary cycling or other low-impact exercises are generally beneficial.

Physiotherapy

physiotherapy

If the pain manifests itself for more than 4-6 weeks, a physiotherapist consultation is recommended. Various exercises and stretching to correct posture, strengthen the back muscles and improve flexibility are available.

To be effective, the exercises should be practiced on a regular basis.

Physiotherapy may also include soft massages, exposure to heat and electrotherapy.

Massages are usually shallow, slow and regular maneuvers that allow to soften the painful area.

Different sources are directed to sore muscles: the infrared, hot wraps, a hot spa (in Europe, Thalassotherapy is often incorporated into the treatment of the sciatica and back pain).

Electrotherapy. Ultrasound, Transcutaneous electrical stimulation or TENS, the ionization, laser, etc. are also pain relievers by blurring the nerve messages.

What is Sciatica

Understanding Sciatica

Sciatic Neuralgia, commonly known as sciatica, is a sharp pain felt along one of the 2 sciatic nerves. Located at the rear of each of the legs, these are the largest nerves in the body (see diagram below). They join the spine lower back, at the height of the lumbar and sacral vertebrae (just above the coccyx).

Sciatic Nerve Diagram

The pain reaches primarily the buttock and thigh, and often extends to the foot. Most often, the pain affects only one side of the body. In the case of low back pain, “kidney tour” or of “lumbago”, the pain is usually located at the bottom of the back and buttocks.

It is of variable intensity and can limit movements.

In the case of sciatica, pain is usually felt to one side of the body, in one buttock only and pain is felt throughout the leg down to the foot. Sometimes pain is also felt at the bottom of the back.

Intense back pain

Causes of Sciatica

 

Sciatica is not a disease in itself. It is the sign that the sciatic nerve is irritated. The majority of cases are due to a herniated disc coming to compress one or other of the 5 roots of the sciatic nerve. Symptoms vary slightly, depending on the affected root. (The root is the part of the nerve that joins the spinal cord within the spinal column.)

Sciatica may also be attributable to one or other of the following factors:

Narrow lumbar Canal (spinal stenosis)

A narrowing of the canal (which are inserted into the nerves) can cause a compression of the nerve roots in lumbar region, and sciatica. This occurs mainly in elderly people.

Piriformis syndrome

It is caused by inflammation of a basin called piriformis muscle (it has the form of a PEAR) or pyramid. If this muscle is contracted and swollen, it can exert pressure on the sciatic nerve and irritate it. Athletes and people who train improperly are more susceptible to this condition.

Facet syndrome

This syndrome arises from the facet joints, thin joints located at the top and at the bottom of each vertebra (not to be confused with intervertebral discs, another structure which allows the articulation of the vertebrae). Poor posture or a false move can create a slight misalignment of these facets. Pain in the back and sometimes sciatica may ensue.

Trauma

trauma

A fall, a car accident or any other situation resulting in a blow to the back can cause injury to the nerve roots.

Other causes

Osteoarthritis or metastases that would put pressure on the sciatic nerve can cause back pain and, more rarely, sciatica. These two situations occur especially in the elderly.

Evolution

In the majority of people suffering from sciatica, symptoms subside within 4 weeks.

However, it often tends to reappear if nothing is done to prevent it. Sciatica may also be associated with a problem of chronic low back pain.

When should I consult?

When symptoms akin to those of a sciatica declare themselves, it is best to consult a doctor for an accurate diagnosis. If it is sciatica and treatments fail to relieve the pain or that it intensifies, consult a doctor again.

Consult a doctor in emergency if:

The back pain is intense as to be hardly bearable; sciatica symptoms are accompanied by urinary or fecal incontinence (or retention), impotence, loss of sensitivity in the region inside thighs and perineum or a fix to stand or climb stairs.

In addition to the symptoms of sciatica, a rapid and unexplained weight loss occurs.

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