- Reduces the sciatic pain in the near term
- Provides conditioning to help prevent future recurrences of the pain
- See also Sciatica Exercise Videos
Exercise Provides Sciatica Pain ReliefWhile it may seem counterintuitive, exercise is usually better for relieving sciatic pain than bed rest. Patients may rest for a day or two after their sciatic pain flares up, but after that time period, inactivity will usually make the pain worse.
Without exercise and movement, the back muscles and spinal structures become deconditioned and less able to support the back. The deconditioning and weakening can lead to back injury and strain, which causes additional pain. In addition, active exercise is also important for the health of the spinal discs. Movement helps exchange nutrients and fluids within the discs to keep them healthy and prevent pressure on the sciatic nerve.
Typical features of any sciatica exercise program include:
- Core muscle strength. Many sciatica exercises serve to strengthen the abdominal and back muscles in order to provide more support for the back. Stretching exercises for sciatica target muscles that cause pain when they are tight and inflexible. When patients engage in a regular program of gentle strengthening and stretching exercises, they can recover more quickly from a flare up of sciatica and are less likely to experience future episodes of pain.
- Specific diagnosis. Most exercise programs will be tailored to address the underlying cause of the patient’s sciatic pain, such as a lumbar herniated disc or spinal stenosis. Doing the wrong type of exercise can worsen the sciatic pain, so it is important to get an accurate diagnosis prior to starting a program of sciatica exercises.
Caring for sciatica should be considered part of one's daily living, not just something to add to the routine at the end of the day. In addition to an exercise routine, patients with sciatica should minimize everyday stress on the lower back, including using appropriate ergonomics while lifting, maintaining good posture, making sure the lower back is supported while sitting, and avoiding sitting or standing for long periods of time.
Article courtesy of Ron S. Miller, PT and Spine-Health
Though these exercises may provide some relief of sciatic pain, most of our patients with these types of symptoms benefit greatly from chiropractic and spinal decompression. Total Health of Naples offers non-surgical spinal decompression treatment to alleviate the pain associated with stenosis, herniated discs and bulging discs. Don't delay call our Naples, FL chiropractic and spinal decompression office today at 239-260-1426 or go to www.totalhealthnaples.com to schedule your consultation to see how we can help.