Why Do I Have Sciatica, and How Can I Get Relief?

Nov 01, 2022

 Why Do I Have Sciatica, and How Can I Get Relief?

Why Do I Have Sciatica, and How Can I Get Relief?

Sciatica is a common pain condition notorious for causing sharp jolts of pain and burning sensations in your legs, hips, buttocks, and lower back. Surprisingly, sciatica is often the result of another condition, and getting relief from sciatica often starts with targeting the root cause of your sciatica.

That’s why our team of orthopedic specialists is here today to help you understand why you have sciatica and what you can do to get relief.

Why do I have sciatica?

Your sciatic nerve is your longest nerve and runs from your lower back through your buttocks, down the back of your leg, and to the back of your heel. Sciatica is the inflammation of your sciatic nerve, and many conditions can irritate this nerve. 

Some of the most common conditions that contribute to sciatica include:

  • Herniated disc (also known as a slipped disc or a ruptured disc)
  • Spinal stenosis 
  • Bone spurs 
  • Degenerative disc disease (DDD)
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Injury that affects your lumbar spine or sciatic nerve
  • Spondylolisthesis 
  • Tumors

In other words, anything that pinches your sciatica nerve can lead to sciatica. Some risk factors increase your risk of irritating this nerve. Sitting for prolonged hours, especially on a thick wallet, can increase your risk of sciatic nerve issues. Aging, diabetes, obesity, and occupational hazards (such as driving for prolonged hours) can also increase your risk of sciatica.

How do I get rid of sciatica?

The best way to get rid of sciatica for good is to address the root cause of the issue. However, some at-home treatments can help you find relief while you work towards treating the underlying issue. Cold and hot therapy, stretching, massaging, and staying active can help you find relief in the short term. When you drive, remove your wallet, so you’re not sitting on it while you drive. If you travel for long periods at a time (flying or driving), take frequent breaks to stand up and stretch.

Although it’s tempting to rest, staying inactive or resting for too long can exacerbate your symptoms. Too much inactivity can also worsen underlying causes (such as arthritis) worse.

Here at Sequoia Institute Orthopaedic Specialists, our team reviews your symptoms, takes your medical history, and analyzes any imaging tests to confirm the source of your symptoms. Once we’ve identified what’s irritating your sciatic nerve, we shape your treatment plan. 

In addition to providing guidance on at-home treatments that help, we may also prescribe medication, get you started with physical therapy, administer injections, and recommend assistive devices. If surgery is your best path forward, rest assured that our team uses minimally invasive techniques.

Don’t postpone your care

We’re on a mission to help you feel better by targeting the root cause of your sciatica. Seeking medical care helps you say goodbye to the pain of sciatica and the underlying condition that causes it.

With multiple locations ー Porterville, Reedley, and Visalia, California ー our team here at Sequoia Institute Orthopaedic Specialists is just a call or click away.