Did you know that your leg pain might actually be originating in your spine? This is because the sciatic nerve extends from your lower back down the back of each of your legs. If there’s a problem with the sciatic nerve at the lower back, the pain can radiate downward. Sciatic pain may be mild, moderate, or excruciating. It may also be accompanied by numbness, muscle weakness, and tingling that extends down the leg. If you think you might have sciatica, it’s time to visit a family chiropractic clinic in San Jose.
Heat and Cold Therapy
For acute sciatica symptoms, your chiropractor may recommend heat and cold therapy. You’ll apply a heating pad or an ice pack to the area for 20 minutes at a time, once every hour or two. Be sure to place a towel between the ice pack and your skin. Alternate the use of cold therapy with heat therapy or use whichever approach seems to reduce your pain most effectively.
Another technique your chiropractor may use for pain management is transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) therapy. TENS therapy targets the painful area with gentle electrical currents that promote release of tension and relief of pain. Your chiropractor will position the TENS electrodes on your skin and set the machine to an appropriate level of intensity.
Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve is compressed or irritated. This often occurs because an intervertebral disc is herniated. The herniated material may press against the sciatic nerve, causing your symptoms. To address the underlying cause of your sciatica symptoms, your chiropractor can apply precisely controlled, forceful movements to the lower back to remove the cause of the nerve impingement.
Some chiropractors have ultrasound machines in their clinics for patients with sciatica. Ultrasound therapy works by harnessing sound waves to create gentle heat deep within the tissues. Ultrasound therapy can reduce pain, stiffness, and swelling. It can ease muscle spasms and promote healing by increasing healthy blood circulation.