You wake up one morning and feel an agonizing pain all the way from your upper thighs to your feet? A shooting and nagging pain in your lower back, that won’t seem to go away no matter whatever you try? You wonder what it is. Well, my friend you may be suffering from sciatic pain which causes painful throbbing in the lower back and limbs.
Sciatic nerve pain also called as sciatica can be severe and debilitating. Sciatic pain is more of a symptom rather than a medical diagnosis. Lower back problems such as spinal stenosis, lumbar herniated disc, spondylolisthesis, pregnancy, piriformis syndrome and degenerative disc disease are the cause behind sciatic symptoms. The pain usually extends from lower back to the rear of the thigh and down through the leg along with burning or tingling. The pain causes difficulty in standing up or sitting down, numbness and weakness in legs, foot and toes.
There are many conventional treatments but they’re mostly known to give temporary relief. You can look through some home remedies and natural therapies. Let’s know what those remedies are:
1. Hot or Cold Compress –
The origin of sciatic pain may be deep in the tissues but heat can relax the tense nerves and muscles that exacerbate the condition. While, cold treatment can reduce the pain and swelling of the nerves. Using heat and cold treatment alternatively is a proven way to relieve pain and swelling.
Apply hot or cold pack on the area for about 15 to 20 minutes on every few hours until you start seeing the results. It is seen, while using heat steamed towel has been found to be most effective.
Note: If you have circulatory problems, do not use cold compresses.
2. Turmeric –
Turmeric is known for its numerous health benefits. It can effectively relieve nerve pain because of its anti-inflammatory properties. It contains a compound called curcumin that helps reduce nerve pain and inflammation.It can be used as a natural remedy for sciatic pain.
Mix 1 teaspoon of turmeric into 1 cup of warm milk and consume. You can also add cinnamon or sweetener. You can even opt for turmeric supplements; however consult your doctor first.
Note: Avoid turmeric if you’re taking pills for diabetes or blood regulation.
3. Massage –
Massage is an ancient technique which has enormous benefits. Massage therapy can relieve sciatic pain by releasing tension, stimulating circulation and increasing the range of motion. It may give temporary relief but can help your sleep improve. You should ideally get a massage from a qualified masseuse who knows the right technique. Pain in the lower back, buttocks and thighs are often associated with trigger points. A light massage by a partner once in a day may also help relax.
It is advisable to mix 3 tablespoon of nutmeg powder in 1 cup of sesame oil. Heat the mixture, allow it to cool and then massage the affected area. It will definitely help relieve sciatic pain.
4. Exercise –
Maintaining normal activity along with proper rest is highly beneficial for sciatic pain. The pain may dissuade you from stretching the lower back and the legs. But stretching exercises performed gently may not only bring you relief but also resolve the underlying problem. Gentle stretching can relieve the stress on the Piriformis muscle and the hamstring, relieving sciatica-like symptoms and strengthening the abdominal and back muscles. Strengthening the muscles may help in quick recovery.
Simple exercise like bending the knee upwards while lying flat on mat, clasping your behind the thigh and gently pulling it towards your chest as far as is comfortable can help a lot. You can also try exercises like spinal rolling, knees rocking, backblock, certain yoga poses.
Note: Do not start anything on your own. Consult your doctor for the right set of exercises for your case.
5. Valerian –
Valerian contains volatile oil which relaxes your muscles and hence, it is perfect for sciatic nerve pain. It also has calming and relieving properties and also a great herb for people dealing with insomnia.
Prepare a valerian tea by steeping 1 teaspoon of dried valerian root in 1 cup of hot water in 10 minutes. Consume this herbal tea for several times in a week for a few weeks. You can also take valerian supplement but not without prior consultation with your doctor.
6. Fenugreek Seeds –
Due to its anti-inflammatory benefits, fenugreek seeds are highly beneficial for sciatic nerve pain. It also helps in soothing rheumatoid arthritis and gout pains.
Talk handful of fenugreek seeds, grin them. Boil the powder with enough milk to get a mushy paste. Apply the paste on the affected area and leave it on for a few hours. Rinse it off. Repeat until you see results.
7. Willow Bark –
Due to its phenolic glycosides with salicin content, it has anti-inflammatory and analgesic benefits. White willow bark can also be used for long-lasting pain relief.
You can take a white willow bark supplement of 120 or 240 mg salicin daily for several weeks. Before starting, consult your doctor.
8. Capsaicin Cream –
Cayenne pepper contains an active ingredient called capsaicin that acts as a natural pain reliever. It helps deplete the levels of a neurotransmitter called substance P, which transports pain signals. Make sure the cream you buy containing 0.025% to 0.075% capsaicin.
Apply it on the affected area up to 4 times a day for at least 1 week.
Note: Applying it on a broken skin may cause a burning sensation, so be careful with its use.
9. Wear Abdominal Support –
There are specially designed lumbosacral belts that offer extra support for the lower back area. It is advised to put the belt on when you’re engaged in any activity that requires bending and lifting weights.
10. Firm Chair and Mattress –
It is important to maintain the right posture and support your back and butt. Sitting for long periods should be avoided. Opt for straight-backed chairs with firm, flat cushions since chairs with contoured and soft seats offer uneven support. While sleeping, you should use firm mattress or a wooden board often used for a number of patients.
Before applying these remedies, please consult a professional who is well known with your medical record.
We wish your pain goes away forever!
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