What is sciatica?
Sciatica is neuralgia which is primarily characterized by pain in the body that is innervated by Nervusischiadicus.Nervusischiadicus is the largest nerve in the human body, which starts from the lower back and spreads to the lower part of the leg and the foot.
Symptoms of sciatica
The main symptom is a sharp pain followed by a feeling of numbness, weakness and stiffness. In most cases, it occurs unilaterally from the waist to the leg.
Causes of sciatica
Piriformis syndrome. The Piriformis muscle can be found deep in the gluteal region and is mounted just above n. ischiadicus. If a muscle spasm occurs, it can put pressure on the nerves and it would cause symptoms of sciatica.
Common causes of this muscle spasm are long periods in a sitting position during the day and not enough physical activity. But it can also occur when performing certain physical activities.
Intervertebral disc herniation in the lumbar area. The internal central part of the disc can herniate and can put pressure on the nerve and cause pain.
Degenerative diseases of the intervertebral disc in the lumbar area. Degeneration of the discs is a normal process in aging, but in certain people this process in the lumbar area can make irritation on then. ischiadicus and result with pain.
Infection, injury or tumor.
Pregnancy changes through which the body passes during the pregnancy such as pressure from the fetus, weight gain and hormonal changes can lead to sciatica.
Due to a small fracture, a dislocation of the vertebrae can occur, which can cause a compression on the nerve.
Also, sciatica can occur secondarily as a result of a primary disease such as diabetes.
How to an accurate diagnosis?
To make an accurate diagnosis, a doctor needs to take a thorough medical history of the patient. From the medical examination he should obtain information about what type of pain you are having, if there are other accompanying symptoms and signs, whether certain position causes more or less pain etc.
If necessary, you can make additional examinations such as computer tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, electromyography etc.
How to relieve pain at home?
Place hot or cold compresses to the troubled area. The type of compress will help more is individual to everyone, so experiment. It is necessary to leave it on for 15 to 20 minutes and repeat the procedure every 2-3 hours. It is good to mention that it is medically confirmed that the hot or cold compresses will surely relieve pain.
Daily exercises and movement can help you to get rid of the neck pain in the long run. These exercises will help with the neck pain especially if it is the chronic type. Exercising is not advised when you have strong pain. Therefore, if you have excessive pain, consult your doctor first.
Analgesics and muscle relaxants are commonly used to relieve pain. In severe cases, corticosteroid therapy is recommended.
Surgical treatment. In some cases, the sole option for treatment is surgery but fortunately it is not necessary in most patients.