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Easy Sciatica Exercises

Sciatica exercises come in many different forms, but the last thing you need when you're in pain is to have to learn a complicated exercise routine. But using exercise to alleviate sciatica doesn't have to be difficult. Getting relief can be as simple as doing just one exercise and doing it frequently until such time as the pain is gone or at least much improved.


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Whether you need the McKenzie extension exercise, or the piriformis stretch, or both, the sciatica exercises work best when repeated frequently - up to several times per day while you are having signficant symptoms.

The pain can vary widely, from a mild ache to a sharp, burning sensation or excruciating discomfort. Sometimes it may feel like a jolt or electric shock. Sciatic pain often starts gradually and intensifies over time. It's likely to be worse when you sit, cough or sneeze. Usually only one lower extremity is affected.

Once you determine whether you have true sciatica or piriformis syndrome, or both, you can usually get considerable relief from just a single exercise for either condition (two exercises if you have both).

There are a lot of treatments recommended for sciatica, some non-invasive and some involving surgery. In cases of bone fragments, spinal tumor, and severe cases of slipped or herniated disc causing the sciatica, of course surgery would be required as treatment. But for some minor instances, chiropractic treatment and acupuncture is enough to relieve the pain. Chiropractic therapy may range from ice/cold therapy, ultrasound, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), to spine adjustment or manipulation. These entail for the lumber area to be exposed to cold or heat to reduce inflammation and muscle spasms.

Detailed information on our services are as follows: Non-Surgical Therapeutic Approaches (Chiropractic Services Summaries) Spinal Disc Decompression An FDA approved treatment of herniated and degenerative discs WITHOUT surgery, which has been shown to be both SAFE and PAINLESS. More than 86% effective in relieving lower back pain and sciatica. Designed to correct the underlying problem, not just relieve the symptoms. An effective treatment for herniated disc, degenerative disc, sciatica, facet syndrome, spinal stenosis, Pre/Post surgical patients. Clinical Nutrition There are numerous ways, which healthcare specialists use to assess the unique nutritional needs of an individual which include taking a thorough history, reviewing dietary habits, physical examination and the performance of laboratory tests such as blood, stool and urine analysis. An individualized nutritional approach will promote health and tissue recovery. Specific supplemental recommendations may be provided to help facilitate anabolic recovery of compromised tissues. Special attention may be placed on recommending neuroprotective strategies in those cases where there is neurological compromise or disease. Physiotherapy Physiotherapy if often one of the earliest approaches taken in a physical medicine setting. It can be used to help an individual gain strength, improve flexibility, reduce pain, and promote greater independence. It is commonly used to treat conditions that affect muscles and nerves. One of the primary applications is the rehabilitation from stroke or injury. Physiotherapy approaches include the use of heat, cold, electric stimulation, ultrasound, iontophoresis, traction and massage. Physical Rehabilitation During the physical rehabilitative approach, attention is placed on the health and integrity of bone and soft tissues, biomechanical function of the affected joint or joints, and the patient's psychosocial response. Physical rehabilitation may be used in conjunction with functional restoration techniques such as physical mobilization or manipulation of joints and related tissues. Adjustive techniques often help promote mobility during the healing process while also promoting quicker and more enduring results. Weight Management Weight management refers to the application of methods to help an individual lose weight. This may involve dietary counseling, nutritional supplementation, exercise therapy or recommendations and behavioral counseling. Acupuncture

The most common causes of sciatica are: a herniated disc, lumbar spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis, trauma, piriformis syndrome, and spinal tumors. When one suffers from a herniated disc, there is an inflammation or bulging of the spinal disc causing it to protrude out of the annulus. The annulus is the space between the spine where the spinal discs are located. Disc herniation could exert pressure on the nearby nerve root causing a direct compression on sensitive nerve tissues such as the sciatic nerve. Lumbar spinal stenosis is almost the same as disc herniation in the sense that spinal nerves are pinched. In this case, though, the spinal canal shrinks, squeezing and applying too much pressure on the spinal nerve inside. The spinal nerve branches out of the spinal canal to the entire body through openings called as neural foramina. Once these passages are congested or narrowed, it causes nerve compression. If the blockage happens on these passageways, they're considered foraminal stenosis. If it occurs on the opening where the sciatic nerve passes, it may cause sciatica.

When the symptoms have subsided, it is extremely important to learn what sciatica exercises you can do to prevent the symptoms from returning in the future. Don't be fooled! Just because the symptoms go away, it doesn't mean that everything is back to normal. All too often, sciatica sufferers go from one episode of pain to the next, with episodes becoming more severe and more frequent over time, because they fail to manage the problem correctly so you can avoid the common problem of developing chronic pain and disability.

Sciatica, as the name implies, affects the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve is the single longest nerve in the body. It originates from the lower lumber region of your spine, through the pelvis, through the hind portion of your leg down to your foot. It is mainly responsible for distributing blood to the back of our lower extremities.

The term sciatica refers to pain that radiates along the path of this nerve, from your back into your buttock and leg. The discomfort can range from mild to incapacitating, and may be accompanied by tingling, numbness or muscle weakness. Rather than a disorder in and of itself sciatica is a symptom of another problem that puts pressure on the nerve.

An easy method to help you determine what the problem is can be done by doing a couple of tests while sitting in a firm chair. In the sitting position, try straightening your knee on the painful side, so that your leg is parallel to the floor. If this increases your symptoms, chances are you have true sciatica related to a disc problem.

Spinal Manipulation Joint manipulation is used to help promote an optimum the tissue repair process through the various stages of healing. Tissues tend to recover and remodel consistent with the stresses placed upon them during the healing process. Some movement is required for the tissues to heal strong and flexible enough to allow normal joint movement and to adequately withstand physical loads placed upon the tissue. In each stage of repair, methods are used to lessen pain, reduce extent of injury, aid in remodeling of granulation tissue, break adhesions as they develop, and most important, attempt to prevent chronic joint stiffness and /or a potential chronic pain syndrome from developing. Spinal manipulation is most effective if it is used in combination with muscle therapy, correction and maintenance of proper posture, home and in-office exercises and stretching, and proper work and home ergonomics.

To figure out what exercise will be of most benefit, it is important to try to distinguish whether you have sciatica from a lumbar disc bulge /herniation, or whether you have a condition called "piriformis syndrome", which produces symptoms very similar to disc-related sciatica but is caused by contraction of the piriformis muscle in the buttock area.

2. A Magnetic therapy pillow pad. If for any reason what so ever you cannot wear a back belt or support the only alternative is to use a pad placed under your back in bed at night. It can also be used during the day when sitting or lying down (even in the car). You will not have 24 hours 7 day a week exposure to the magnets but if you cannot wear a strap this is an acceptable alternative as long as it is used every might when the body is at its most receptive to magnetic healing.

For true sciatica, most people will find relief through the basic McKenzie extension exercise (named for physical thearapist Robin McKenzie). This exercise is performed by lying face down on a firm surface and then propping yourself up on your elbows, creating an increase in the curve of the lower back. Getting into this position may be painful at first, but within about 30 seconds, most people will notice a decrease in the severity or the range of the sciatica, or both. A positive sign is when the symptoms furthest from the spine decrease.

About the Author:

Dr. George Best has been treating patients with sciatica and piriformis syndrome in his San Antonio, Texas practice since 1992. To access his free E-book and his free video course on understanding and treating sciatica, go to http://www.sciaticaselfcare.com.

For piriformis syndrome, you can do a simple stretch of the piriformis muscle. I recommend you do this by lying on your back, pulling your knee on the painful side toward the same side shoulder for a few seconds, then partially releasing the leg and then pulling your knee toward the opposite shoulder. Hold this stretch for about 10 seconds at a time, then carefully release your leg for a a few seconds before repeating the stretch.

As long as the symptoms are decreasing furthest from the spine, the exercise described is beneficial, even if the symptoms closer to the spine seem to increase at first (they'll usually improve with repetition of the exercise over time). I suggest you remain in this position for a couple of minutes and then take a break by either just lying flat, or by getting up and walking for at least a few minutes in between the exercise repetitions in order to avoid developing a lot of tightness in the low back muscles.

Have you ever felt a chronic, burning pain that spreads from your lower hip running down to your foot? Is it just as painful sitting down or standing up? You might be suffering from sciatica.

 
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There are really only 2 magnetic therapy devices that are effective in treating sciatica: 1 .A magnetic therapy back strap or support. The functional straps and supports can be placed directly over the area of pain. If the sciatica is very low in the back then a narrow strap will be more practical and altogether more comfortable than a wide support, as it fits snugly around the hip area and will stay over the compressed nerve. A wider support is effective if the sciatic pain is higher and nearer to the waist area. As with all magnets the straps/supports need to be worn for 24 hours and 7 days a week until the pain has gone.

Another cause can be spondylolisthesis, or more commonly known as slipped discs. It may also cause sciatica when a vertebral disc moves out of place and applies direct pressure to the spinal nerve adjacent to it, usually occuring on the lumbar or the lower portion of the spine. Blunt force trauma to the lower back region may cause severe damage to the spine and may cause sciatica as well. Accidents or external forces that may cause bone fractures like vehicular accidents, horse riding accidents, sports injuries may all lead to sciatica as bone fragments may occasionally be the cause of the nerve compression. The piriformis syndrome occurs when the piriformis muscle spasms and compresses the sciatic nerve. In this case, the sciatic nerve running beneath the piriformis muscle may sometimes get irritated by movement of the said muscle.

Lastly, spinal tumors are anomalous growths on the spine that can either be benign or malignant. Rare as sciatica cases being caused by spinal tumors may be, once a tumor develops in the lumbar region, it may cause nerve compression that may trigger sciatica.

It has been proposed that acupuncture may stimulate a local immune response and also contribute to the release of special chemicals within the central nervous system referred to as endorphins and enkephalins, both, which are natural pain reducing compounds. Acupuncture has been used by millions of American patients and performed by thousands of physicians, dentists, acupuncturists, and other practitioners for relief or prevention of pain and for a variety of health conditions. After reviewing the existing body of knowledge, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration removed acupuncture needles from the category of ""experimental medical devices"" and now regulates them just as it does other devices, such as surgical scalpels and hypodermic syringes, under good manufacturing practices and single-use standards of sterility. Over the years, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has funded a variety of research projects on acupuncture, including studies on the mechanisms by which acupuncture may produce its effects, as well as clinical trials and other studies. Dietary, lifestyle, and exercise recommendations may accompany the acupuncture approach.

What is Sciatica? The longest nerve in your body, the sciatic nerve runs from your pelvis through your hip area and buttocks and down each leg. It divides into the tibial and peroneal nerves at the level of your knees. The sciatic nerve controls many of the muscles in your lower legs and provides feeling to your thighs, legs and feet.

The second test is to bend your leg to pull the knee toward your chest. Begin by first bringing the knee on the painful side toward the shoulder on the same side. Then release the leg slightly and pull the knee toward the opposite shoulder. If pulling the knee toward the opposite shoulder increases the pain significantly more than pulling it toward the same side shoulder, chance are you have piriformis syndrome. It should be noted that it is possible to have both true sciatica and piriformis syndrome at the same time.

Exercise Therapy Exercise therapy refers to the implementation of exercise with a specific goal in mind. An exercise therapy program may be supervised or unsupervised. Supervised exercise is usually part of a physical rehabilitative program. Patients may be provided with simple exercises, which they can perform at home. Home exercises are often provided to help improve flexibility and restore the strength required to stabilize a joint region. Some exercises are provided to help reduce the risk for injury or re-injury. A spinal stabilization exercise program is often used to strengthen muscles around the spine to reduce excessive or abnormal joint and spinal region movement patterns. Physical Therapy Physical therapy often includes the application of modalities such as ultrasound, electrical stimulation, heat, cold and iontophoresis in an attempt to reduce pain and inflammation. In some cases a combination of these approaches may be used. Manual approaches such as joint mobilization or joint manipulation may be applied during the course of physical therapy. The patient may be entered into a progressive exercise program to improve flexibility, muscular strength and endurance. The patient may be referred to an outside facility for aquatic therapy. Work Injury Rehabilitation Evaluation of the injured worker may require a functional capacity evaluation (FCE). The findings serve as a baseline of physical performance capacity at the workplace. If significant deficits are found a course of work conditioning/work hardening may be implemented. This involves the implementation of postural retraining and a course of specific exercises. Onsite or simulated job analysis may be recommended to help design the best therapeutic approach. An ergonomic or workplace assessment may be implemented to provide further insight into the rehabilitative requirements and to assist in the implementation of preventive measures. The practice of chiropractic and acupuncture is based on providing care without drugs or surgery. At LSRC, our doctors are well trained in disease prevention, clinical nutrition and the science of tissue recovery and repair. Our doctors understand the steps required to promote maximum musculoskeletal tissue recovery and repair and return you to an active lifestyle! "

Acupuncture is a form of alternative medicine that originated from China. Fine needles are inserted into your skin in strategic points in the body to release negative energy and restore health and well-being, and treat pain and illnesses. It has been proven effective by medical practitioners. It is highly recommended as a treatment for generic lumbar pain, even for mild sciatica, as it supposedly releases tension from the spastic muscles and relieves the pressure from the compressed nerve.

So if you have been experiencing sharp, burning pain on your lower extremities, it is best that you consult a medical practitioner at once. You might be experiencing sciatica. But like they say, prevention is better than cure. Let's not abuse our bodies. RESOURCE BOX: Choose Variety of High Quality Medicines at Online Medicines Enjoyed Reading this article? More here: Pharmacy Articles

Magnetic therapy for sciatica. Sciatica can resolve by itself but this can take many weeks or even months. You can however quite rapidly reduce the symptoms of sciatica with magnets. As with all magnetic therapy treatments, the magnets have to be placed as close to the area of pain as possible, this will be the lower (lumbar) region of the back. Even though you may have pain down your legs or in your buttocks the cause is still in the lower back. When you treat the back area and the sciatica resolves then the pain running down the leg and buttocks will also dissipate.

"Located in Plano, TX the Legacy Spine and Rehabilitation Center provides a variety of non-surgical therapeutic approaches to help address conditions ranging from Cervical spine disorders, Degenerative disc disease, Degenerative spinal conditions, Herniated disc, Ligament strain, Lumbar spine disorders, Muscle strain, Myelopathy, Osteoarthritis, Sciatica, Scoliosis and deformity, Spinal stenosis, Spondylolisthesis, Thoracic spine disorders, Trauma and Whiplash. From simple procedures to more complex ones, LSRC have been serving the Plano community for years, yielding the most positive results.

What are the signs and symptoms of Sciatica? Pain that radiates from your lower (lumbar) spine to your buttock and down the back of your leg is the hallmark of sciatica. You may feel the discomfort almost anywhere along the nerve pathway, but it's especially likely to follow one of these routes: ???From your lower back to your knee. ???From the mid buttock to the outside of your calf, the top of your foot and into the space between your last two toes. ???From the inside of your calf to your inner ankle and sole.

When magnetic therapy is used in-conjunction with deep penetrating massage and cold/ice therapy, the symptoms of sciatica can be resolved in just a few days. Massage will relax the muscles that have gone into spasm around the trapped nerve, the cold or ice will help reduce the inflammation and heat around the injury and both of these will prepare the tissues and muscles, so that the magnetic field can penetrate more quickly into the damaged area. Massage and ice therapy can be used 3-4 times a day for approximately 10 minutes at a time.

In addition to pain, you may also experience: ???Numbness or muscle weakness along the nerve pathway in your leg or foot. In some cases, you may have pain in one part of your leg and numbness in another. ???Tingling or a pins-and-needles feeling. This occurs most commonly in your toes or part of your foot. ???A loss of bladder or bowel control. This is a sign of cauda equina syndrome, a rare but serious condition that requires emergency care. If you experience either of these symptoms, seek medical help immediately.

Debbie Shimadry is as an expert guest on magnetic therapy for BBC Radios and is also the managing director of leading magnetic therapy company worldofmagnets.co.uk. If you are interested in natural pain relief visit the magnetic article directory or the health reciprocal link exchange directory.


 
 
     
 
 





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