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Sciatica Q & A

What is Sciatica?

Sciatica is radiating pain along your sciatic nerve pathway, which begins in your lower back and branches through your buttocks and each leg. 

The pain often affects just one side of your body and may result from a herniated disc, spine narrowing, or a bone spur that compresses part of your nerve.

What are the symptoms of sciatica?

Sciatica often presents as one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Shooting pain

  • Pain when you cough or sneeze

  • Weakness

  • Numbness

  • Burning

  • Tingling

  • Radiating pain

  • Sharp or mild pain

  • An electric shock

Pain associated with sciatica can occur in your lower back, buttocks, legs, and even your toes. The discomfort may travel from your back down one leg.

What are the risk factors for sciatica?

Anybody can develop sciatica, but the following factors appear to increase your risk of experiencing it:

  • Being obese or overweight 

  • Having diabetes

  • Prolonged sitting

  • Older age

  • Carrying heavy loads

Possible complications associated with sciatica include leg weakness, loss of feeling in your leg, or loss of bladder or bowel function. 

How is sciatica diagnosed?

To help diagnose sciatica, the Complete Wellness team reviews your symptoms and medical history. They complete an exam and may have you perform specific exercises, or complete imaging tests like X-rays, MRIs, electrical impulse tests, or CT scans.

What is the treatment for sciatica?

After diagnosing the cause of chronic pain, your Complete Wellness provider may recommend one or more of the following treatments:

  • Heat or ice therapy - Using heat or ice therapy helps reduce inflammation and pain associated with sciatica. Try alternating heat with ice treatments.

  • Physical therapy - Your Complete Wellness specialist demonstrates strength exercises and stretches that offer pain relief and build strength to prevent future sciatica pain.

  • Chiropractic adjustments - Chiropractic adjustments involve your Complete Wellness specialist placing controlled pressure on areas of your spine to realign it and relieve stress on your sciatic nerve.

  • Massage - Massage helps relax you, break up tight tissues in your back, and relieve sciatic nerve pressure for pain relief.


Don’t live with sciatica pain when holistic solutions are available at Complete Wellness. Schedule an appointment by phone today or use the online booking tool.

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