Patients with sciatica do not have identical symptoms. This phenomenon is because of the different types of back pain occurring due to various causes. Some patients experience symptoms immediately after injury. However, there are those whose symptoms flare up gradually over time. Whether your pain is acute, short-lived, or chronic, persistent for over three months, the symptoms can be unbreakable and make it hard for you to move and perform basic tasks. For this reason, specialists at Neuropathy and Pain Centers of Texas provide thorough diagnostic procedures to establish the root cause of patients’ back pain.
What is sciatica?
Sciatica is a condition that develops gradually from a herniated disk. The spine consists of bones called vertebra. However, the bones require layers of connective tissue to ensure the smooth gliding of bones on each other.
Sciatica is a medical condition in the lumbar region’s lower spine. The cause of this health concern is wearing out of the connective tissue between the vertebra, causing the soft center of the spine to push out from the rigid outer ring.
The herniation of spinal disks puts a lot of pressure on surrounding nerves. Sciatica is the pain that develops upon pressure increase on the sciatic nerve.
What is the sciatic nerve?
There is no longer any nerve in the body than the sciatic nerve. This nerve starts from the lumbar region of the spine and extends to the kegs and feet after splitting into the hips and buttocks. For this reason, the best way to detect sciatica pain is to analyze whether your back pain is radiating from the lower back and traveling to the peripheral organs.
The pain usually varies, but you should expect the pain to level up from mild ache to sharp severe pain as your condition progresses. Patients also report losing sensation, feeling tingly, and experiencing muscle weakness.
What are the risk factors for sciatica?
The main reason vertebral connective tissue wears out is repeated movements and aging. However, other risk factors make you vulnerable to developing the disease. For example:
- Genetics: If you have a loved one with a positive sciatica diagnosis, you are at risk of getting the same disease as you grow older.
- Being overweight: Overweight patients put a lot of pressure on the spine, thus promoting complications like sciatica. Pregnant women also strain their spine while carrying a fetus and risk developing herniated disks.
Your career choice: Certain jobs involve prolonged, repeated movements that can damage the spine by causing wear and tear upon bone interaction. It would be best to take precautions by lifting properly to prevent spine damage.
What is the treatment for sciatica?
The initial treatment plan physicians recommend to patients involves conservative techniques. For example, patients can receive pain relief after taking over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen.
Other non-invasive treatment options include placing cold or warm on the lower back to help relax muscles and eliminate any tension causing pain. Specific physical therapy exercises can reduce inflammation in the lumbar sound and promote circulation to manage pain.
Surgery is a treatment option for patients with chronic sciatica pain that does not respond to conservative interventions. Contact Neuropathy and Pain Centers of Texas if your sciatica is causing symptoms like loss of bladder and bowel function to develop the right surgical approach to promote comfort and enhance mobility.