So many patients come into the Oakville Chiropractic clinic and tell us they’ve been diagnosed with sciatica. Hmm, really? Sciatica is not a diagnosis – it is a symptom!
Sciatica refers to any pain running down the back of the bum and into the back of the leg. Sometimes the pain can even reach as far as the foot! Typically sciatica refers to a sharp, stabbing pain. For it to be a sciatica injury the nerve pain needs to go past your knee.
Too many time we see patients suffering from pseudo-sciatica for months only to be fixed by our Oakville Chiropractors in a couple weeks. Treatment for Sciatica or pseudo-sciatica usually involves IFC, Chiropractic Adjustments, Muscle Release Therapy, Shockwave Therapy and even Acupuncture. Unlike actual “Sciatica” pseudo-sciatica is usually cleared up in 5 to 10 visits when Sciatica takes between 6 weeks and 6 months.
Sciatic and Piriformis Anatomy
Oakville Sciatica Treatment
- IFC and Heat: Once you have been diagnosed with Sciatica our chiropractic team will begin treatment with Interferential Current Therapy and some Heat. This will feel like a deep massage and help start the healing process. The heat and the electric stim from the IFC will increase blood flow, lessen pain and help relax the tissues.
- Shockwave Therapy for Sciatica: After 10 minutes of IFC our treatment team will shockwave the affected area. The area depends on the patient, but is usually the outside of the bum, lower back or closer to the hip on the sciatica side. Shockwave is an air powered gun that shoots a bullet 15 times a second against and applicator head. Most patients will start with 800-1000 “hits” to the affected area and then work their way up to 1500 “hits” as they begin to heal.
- ART and Trigger Point Therapy: Once the shockwave therapy has been completed our chiropractor will perform some deep trigger point therapy and some ART. This will usually be in the glute muscles or the piriformis muscles of the affected sciatica leg. Active Release Therapy consists of Dr. Steve pressing his thumbs into a damaged muscle around the patients bum and moving the patients leg/knee/foot. Trigger point therapy is similar but without the moving of the leg.
- Chiropractic Adjustment: Almost all sciatica patients will receive an adjustment on their low back and lower middle back, if they can handle it. The adjustment to the low back will help realign the SI Joints and the Lumbar Spine to allow pressure off the nerves that could be causing the sciatica. For this the patient will be on their side and manipulated to get the release. The lower part of the patients midback is also adjusted in most sciatica cases. This release of the joints, lower tensions and decrease overall nerve tension allowing the patient to stand up straighter and lessen the burden of their low back. This adjustment is usually performed with the patient face up and the chiropractor will reach behind and give the spine a nice hug.
Our Best Oakville Chiropractic Team finds here are three main causes of sciatica – a disc disruption/herniation, sacroiliac joint syndrome and piriformis syndrome. We will discuss all three!
Causes Of Sciatica
There are varying degrees of disc injuries – the most mild being a slight bulging of the disc and the most severe being a full disc herniation. Our chiropractic clinic finds these injuries are most common in ages 20-45 and occur most frequently after heavy lifting or chronic overloading (repetitive bending at the waist). Lack of exercise and poor core strength can make people more vulnerable to this injury.
Sacroiliac Joint Syndrome
SI Joint Syndrome is the most common cause of lower back pain at our Chiropractic Clinic. The sacroiliac joint is the connection between the pelvis and the spine. These joints can refer pain down the back of the leg when they’re inflamed or dysfunctional. Pregnancy, a leg length inequality or a lifting can all be causes of this pain. Pain is usually aggravated by any movement so it can be an intrusive pain to have!
There is a muscle in the bum called the piriformis and It can squeeze the sciatic nerve and cause sciatica. If this muscle gets too tight it can cause symptoms down the back of the leg. This pain feels like a literal pain in the butt! It typically feels worse with sitting, but getting up and moving alleviates some of the pain. Piriformis Stretch Here.
Suffering from back pain and looking for an Oakville Chiropractor for Treatment?
So if your pain is running down the back of your leg, book an appointment to see Dr. Steve or Dr. Jenn. With all of these conditions, the sooner you can get them addressed the better! Don’t waste any time and come see us at Nottinghill Family Wellness Centre to get rid of your pain!