6 Excellent Ways to Relieve Sciatic Nerve Pain

Last updated: July 2, 2021

Contributed by:
Richard Honaker M.D.
Primary Care Physician
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How do you get rid of sciatic nerve pain naturally?

  • Chiropractic Spinal Adjustments
  • Yoga
  • Stretching
  • Acupuncture
  • Massage Therapy
  • Heating Pads
  • More Activity
  • Reduce Inflammation

There are remedies for back pain that treat sciatica nerve pain and improve spine health. Here are 6 natural treatments.

If you have woken up feeling extreme pain from your upper thighs to your feet or if you deal with intense lower back pain that spreads downward and no matter what you try it just won’t go away, you could be dealing with sciatica nerve pain. It causes painful throbbing in the lower back and limbs.

It all starts in the lower spine and can come and go. Once you begin to deal with sciatica nerve pain, you’ll be dealing with a whole lot of discomfort that will quickly ruin your day. But, there’s good news. There are remedies for back pain that treat sciatica nerve pain and improve spine health. Here are 6 natural treatments for sciatica nerve pain: 

1. Chiropractor Spinal Adjustments

A chiropractor can work with you to realign your spinal discs and prevent protrusion into the canal that targets the underlying source of pain. One study from the Official Journal of the North American Spinal Society found that those who suffered from sciatica nerve pain and received chiropractic adjustments experienced less local pain.

They also had fewer days with pain, and even fewer cases of moderate or severe pain compared to those who didn’t receive chiropractic adjustments.


2. Yoga and Stretching

Certain movements can aggravate sciatica nerve pain, but in some cases it can actually help to relieve pain. For some people, sitting or standing for a long time and then moving around suddenly tends to trigger pain. Scrunching or shortening the spine tends to make pain worse like raising the legs up, bringing the knees toward the chest or squatting.

On the other hand, lengthening the spine through stretching, yoga, or lying down can help you develop a good posture while reducing stiffness, inflammation, and pain.

Studies have shown that yoga is safe and effective for people with sciatica nerve pain. The most important movements for preventing sciatica nerve pain target the back, building strength, and relaxing the stiff areas. Exercises that prevent lower back pain and strengthen the core are used even in rehabilitation settings for sciatica nerve pain patients after surgery.

3. Acupuncture and Massage Therapy

Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medicine practice based on achieving or maintaining better health by opening the body’s natural flow of energy. The practice uses tiny and practically pain-free needles to target specific pathways in the body. FDA has approved it as a treatment for back pain. It is even supported by different studies for relieving chronic pain of all kinds, including sciatica nerve pain.

Rolfing and massage therapy are other two nonsurgical, holistic approaches that open muscles, tissues and channels of energy within the body, which improves blood flow and fight pain. Massage therapy is linked with a reduction in back pain, muscle relaxation, and even healthy releases of endorphins that act like pain relievers.


4. Get Moving

Being stuck in the same position for many hours can make things worse when it comes to bulging discs and back pain. Most treatment plans suggest more movement in general, together with targeted exercises to loosen up inflamed areas. Include some stretches or light isometric exercises in your daily routine.

It can help relieve pain in the spine of legs while improving strength. When your symptoms come back or worsen, you can practice some stretches and exercises at home without having to visit your doctor.

Start by alternating periods of sitting/lying down with short walks. Make it your goal to take more steps every day. Get a pedometer or fitness tracker to get you motivated to be more active and increase your walking distance. When you’re at home, work on lengthening your spine by improving your posture.

5. Use Heating Pads

Most people find relief by using heating pads set on a low or medium setting placed on the lower back for around 15 to 20 minutes every day. Try doing this several times a day while at work or when you’re home. A similar approach is taking warm baths because heat loosens up tight muscles and helps increase circulation. Try to get a reusable heating pad that requires hot water or to be plugged in.

Heat is usually used to dull pain but the opposite works for some people. Some prefer applying an ice pack to the back for 10 to 15 minutes every two to three hours. If pain remains, doctors usually recommend taking an over-the-counter painkiller when symptoms get bad, like Ibuprofen or Advil.

6. Reduce Inflammation

About 5 to 10 percent of all patients with low back pain have sciatica, but there are a few personal and occupational risk factors that increase the odds for developing sciatica nerve pain. These factors are older age, being tall, high levels of mental stress, being overweight or obese, sitting for long periods, smoking, and high amounts of exposure to vibration from vehicles.

Most of these risk factors cause inflammation and makes it harder to heal from injuries and even increases pain. To fight inflammation and improve your odds of feeling better more quickly, eat nutrient-dense healing diet, avoid smoking and recreational drugs, get exercise, and get good sleep. Reducing inflammation may even prevent cancer.

Having back pain is something most people deal with at one point or another in their lives, and usually it’s in the form of sciatica nerve pain. Herniated spinal discs and inflammation are the biggest reasons for sciatica nerve pain. The best thing that you can do is to start stretching and move your back muscles to prevent this painful condition. If symptoms persist or worsen consult your doctor.

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Submitted by Dr. Richard Honaker: http://www.independentmedicalexaminer.com/IME-Directory/Virginia/Dr-Richard-A-Honaker-MD.asp

Disclaimer: This article provides general information and is not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any disease or medical condition. If you require specific advice, please consult one of our medical professionals through the app. However, in case of an emergency, please call 911.

About Richard Honaker M.D.

Dr. Richard Honaker has over 40 years of experience as a primary care physician specializing in several different areas of medicine. He is able to provide expert case review and analysis for insurance and workers compensation cases as well as providing online medical consultations as the Chief Medical Advisor for Your Doctors Online.

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