Chiropractic treatment for sciatica is a treatment option taken up by many patients. The science of chiropractic is based on the belief that the human body has everything it needs to heal itself, as well as the potential to do so. While chiropractors do not claim to heal injuries or relieve pain, they do bring your spine and body back into correct alignment and balance so that it can heal itself. This is why chiropractic is often such a successful sciatica treatment.
Chiropractic is a drug-free and non-invasive therapy that is effective at addressing many health issues. There are different styles and methods of chiropractic which are followed by these fully trained professionals.
Before a chiropractic doctor begins any treatment, he or she will take a full medical history from you and may order x-rays and other imaging tests to help ascertain the state of your spine. A physical and neurological exam will be conducted; muscle responses will be checked, measurements may be taken, reflexes tested to get a clear picture of how chiropractic can help you.
After all the information is collected, your condition will be discussed fully with you and possible sciatica chiropractic treatments explained. If they don’t think they can help your sciatica pain, a good practitioner will say so and not try to treat you at all.
How does chiropractic help sciatica?
One of the most common causes of sciatica is compression of the sciatic nerve root in the lower back. This compression causes irritation of the nerve and inflammation around it and these factors cause the pain and other symptoms that are commonly experienced with sciatica. The sciatic nerve is the longest in the body, traveling from the lower back, down the back of the thigh and into the lower leg, which explains why sciatica pain can be felt anywhere along this path.
Compression of the nerve is caused by a number of conditions but many of them result from a problem with the alignment of the spine. This is where chiropractic becomes a useful treatment for sciatica because the aim of the chiropractor is to re-align the spine which allows the body to heal itself.
There are different types of treatments a chiropractor might use; the method will be determined by your symptoms and the cause of them. The most common types of chiropractic treatments include:
Ice therapy which is useful in reducing inflammation.
Ultrasound helps to increase circulation and warm the area to reduce pain, swelling and muscle tension and spasm.
TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation): an electrical device sends an light electric current to the nerves in the skin to give relief from pain caused by muscle stiffness and spasm, and to improve mobility, by increasing the endorphins produced by your body.
Spinal manipulation or adjustment is the most common chiropractic treatment for sciatica because it corrects misalignment of the vertebrae, allows herniated or slipped discs to return to the correct alignment, frees up pinched nerves and compression of nerves.
You may need several treatment sessions with the chiropractor to fully recover from the cause of sciatica; this process frequently takes some months but will depend on the length of time that the spine has been out of alignment.
Chiropractic treatment for sciatica is not applicable to all cases but can give amazing relief for those whose sciatica responds to chiropractic care. Because it is a non-surgical and medication-free treatment, chiropractic sciatica treatment is increasing in popularity.