The Top Causes of Sciatica Revealed and How to Prevent Sciatica Pain

Dr. Ben Dyer

Here's something that might surprise you as you dive into the top causes of sciatica: it is not a condition, disorder, or diagnosis in and of itself.

Sciatica pain can be described as dull, achy, sharp, or shooting pain in the lower back and hip, buttock, and leg on one side of the body. Some may also experience burning, numbness, or tingling sensations.

When someone says they "have sciatica," what they really have is a very specific set of symptoms hinting at an underlying condition.

Most of all the top causes of sciatica are linked to the irritation, compression, or impingement of a sciatic nerve.

How do we know this?

When a nerve is compressed or irritated — be it from a herniated spinal disc, bone spur, or ligament overgrowth — it can become inflamed and painful. As you may have noticed, the causes we just listed aren't isolated to injuries.

It's easy to understand how lifting a heavy object at work or sustaining a blow of some kind or simply moving in an awkward fashion could result in an injury to your back.

But, what we're about to tell you as we dive into the top causes and how to prevent sciatica pain naturally may surprise you.

Research has shown that too much sitting may be one of the most common reasons you find yourself experiencing that sciatica pain.

Why It Matters

Natural changes that occur as we age, the pressure of gravity, and even stenosis (narrowing of the spinal column) can contribute to the development of compressed or "pinched" nerves and sciatica pain.

The two sciatic nerves (or, more specifically, nerve bundles) are the longest nerves in the body and for that reason, there are lots of opportunities for either one to become irritated. These are the major nerves to your legs, and they provide the sensation and motor fibers that allow you to stand up, walk, and run.

When you spend hours per day sitting down, the muscles that support your low back aren't regularly activated, so they can start to atrophy or weaken. This can lead to imbalances in your back that then result in increased pressure and stress on your spine.

Without the support of the stabilising muscles your spine relies on to keep your vertebrae, discs, and nerves in balance and aligned, you're more likely to injure your back. To put that in perspective, we've seen patients who've injured their back from lifting lightweight items around the house.

Think of your nerves like small, high-powered electrical lines. They transmit signals from the power station — your central nervous system — out to all of the muscles, organs, and cells in your body. The electrical lines or nerves in your low back travel down your hips, buttocks, and legs to your feet to your toes. If the nerve is irritated at the power station, it will affect everything along the path of that line. That is why a spinal disc irritating a nerve in your low back can result in pain down into your leg!

Sciatica pain can occur at any point along the course of either sciatic nerve depending on where the irritation exists, and it can then radiate from there. It’s possible to experience sciatica symptoms without low back pain. It’s possible the pain in your leg isn’t related to an impingement of its sciatic nerve at all.

That’s why it’s so important to seek sciatica treatment in Hong Kong from a healthcare professional who not only has an in-depth understanding of the top causes of sciatica pain, but of pain in the lower extremities as well.

Many people just don't know that many of the top causes of sciatica pain can often be resolved without the need for surgery, spinal injections, or pain medications prescribed by an MD. For preventing sciatica pain, movement-based care is at the top of the list. Stretching, for example, before and after any physical activity can help you both improve your flexibility and reduce your chances of experiencing a number of avoidable injuries.

Modern research also indicates that consistent exercise can stop or even reverse the effects of too much sitting. Incorporating just 30 minutes of exercise each day can help strengthen the supporting muscles around your spinal column to help prevent future episodes of sciatica.

Other recent studies tell us that getting periodic spinal adjustments can have a part to play in both the correction and prevention of conditions that can cause sciatica pain.

In fact, the top research journal SPINE found that maintained chiropractic care can evaluate, detect, and potentially prevent future disc problems and low back pain episodes.

In other words, chiropractic can be a very effective “how” when you’re considering the actual steps of how to prevent sciatica pain and the recurrence of symptoms.

If you’re looking for a sciatica pain specialist in Hong Kong that takes a holistic approach, you’ve come to the right place.

Next Steps

Periodic chiropractic care has the potential to increase your flexibility and range of motion, help keep your spinal discs healthy, and it could even prevent future episodes of back pain and the development of the top causes of sciatica.

In our practice, we utilise various treatments, including adjustments, to correct spinal conditions such as herniated discs and minor vertebral displacements (subluxations) as well as joint restrictions related to scar tissue and muscle spasms to both help relieve your sciatica pain and prevent it from recurring.

Maintaining your body with movement-based care is key in how to prevent sciatica pain. We recommend including regular chiropractic care in addition to implementing some level of planning to help get and keep you moving daily.

Even if time is tight most days, taking a few minutes every hour to get up and walk around can go a long way. Starting small is better than not starting at all!

And, as days become weeks, months, and years, the exercise you do now will pay huge dividends down the road to keep you happy, healthy, and pain-free.

If you have struggled with recurrent or chronic sciatica pain, you're not limited to invasive surgical procedures, injections, or prescription pain medications to find relief.

You deserve better.

Schedule an appointment with a holistically focused sciatica pain specialist in Hong Kong like us.

We'll work together to pinpoint the root cause of your pain and come up with a plan that can help you get and stay out of pain for years to come.

You deserve nothing less!

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