The pain caused by compression or irritation of the sciatic nerve is called sciatica. It is severe and debilitating although it typically affects just one part of the body, starting from the lower back and continuing down the back of the leg.
Another symptom can include tingling or burning sensation in the leg, weakness, and numbness down the affected leg and toes, shooting pain that causes difficulty sitting down or standing up.
The most common cause of sciatica is a slipped or herniated disc, but it can as well be caused by degenerative disc disease, spinal injury or infection, spinal stenosis, pregnancy, piriformis syndrome, and isthmic spondylolisthesis. Nowadays, there are various conventional treatments for this condition, but most of them soothe the pain only temporarily. Moreover, most of the steroid injections can lead to severe side effects.
We present you 4 home remedies for painful sciatica:
Not only that it can relieve sciatica pain, but massage therapy can help the body heal itself, particularly if the cause of the problem is a muscle spasm. Moreover, it helps stimulate circulation, release tension, and raises the range of motion. Due to St John’s wort’s anti-inflammatory properties, this herb can relieve sciatica inflammation and pain. Use St. John’s wort oil to massage the affected area two to three times per day until you notice relief.
2. Hot or Cold Compresses
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You can relieve the sciatica inflammation and pain with hot or cold compresses. Cold compress numbs the pain and lowers the swelling around the nerve. Heat compress relaxes tense muscles which might be pressing the sciatic nerve.
Another way is to combine heat and cold treatment, beginning with the hot and ending with the cold treatment. Use a steamed towel (moist heat) for the hot compress since it’s more effective. Put a cold or hot pack on the affected area, and let it stay for 15 to 20 minutes. Repeat this every couple of hours until you notice pain relief.
3. Capsaicin Cream
Capsaicin, the active compound in cayenne pepper, is a natural pain reliever as it helps deplete the substance P levels (a neurotransmitter that transports pain signals). Apply an ointment or cream that contains 0.025% to 0.075% capsaicin on the affected area up to four times a day, in a period of one week.
Exercise and regular physical activity are extremely important for the treatment of sciatica. Begin regular exercise routine to strengthen the back and abdominal muscles, a day or two after the flare-up of sciatica. In this way, you will hasten the recovery process.
Knee to Chest Stretch is great for lowering the sciatic nerve irritation and improving your lower back’s flexibility.
Lie down on your back on the floor with stretched and hip-width apart legs.
Relax your upper body and bend your knee upwards while breathing in.
Pull your thigh towards your chest with your hands clasped behind it, as far as it’s comfortable for you.
Your leg should stay flat on the ground.
Remain in this position for about 20 seconds and keep in mind to have controlled and deep breaths during this period. After this period, lower your leg carefully.
Do the same procedure with the other leg. After repeating this three to five times, do the exercise with both legs for about three to five minutes.