What exactly is sciatica?
Sciatica is, frankly, miserable! If you’ve suffered from this pain, you know it can really ruin your day.
Sciatica is actually just a symptom that is being caused by pressure on your sciatic nerve, which runs from the base of your back at the spine down your torso to your feet. The pain can come on suddenly or appear gradually over time. It’s often the result of a pinched nerve, which can develop from stress, pregnancy, injury, or even lifting something the wrong way.
The pain can radiate throughout your lower half and really impede your actions. Unfortunately, the pain can be exacerbated when you try to walk, sit, or cough and sneeze. Fortunately, there are ways to treat and prevent sciatica from bothering you!
At Home: Anti-inflammatory smoothie
One of the keys in beating sciatic pain is bringing inflammation down. In Western culture, there are so many elements of our day that cause inflammation – from stress in our work, to high-sugar diets, to imbalances of bacteria in your body.
Drinking turmeric tea (recipe here) every morning is a great way to combat inflammation (along with drinking lots of water!) but I’ve also included a smoothie recipe that helps fight inflammation and sciatic pain specifically. Ginger, berries, and spinach are all essential, natural remedies to fighting inflammation. Incorporating these in your diet is a huge step in the right direction. Check out the recipe below!
Getting Help: Chiropractor and Acupuncture
Visiting a chiropractor or acupuncturist can also help immensely with relieving pain from your sciatic nerve. A chiropractor can readjust your spine by putting pressure on the pinched nerve, causing the vertebrae to realign. An acupuncturist will isolate the points causing the pain, and with the insertion of tiny needles, muscle relaxation will occur and endorphin production will increase.
Move That Body: Yoga and Exercise
Going to a gentle yoga class is also a great idea. The instructor will lead you into easy poses that will relieve tension your body. Through foundational poses like downwardfacing dog and child’s pose, you will lengthen, align, and strengthen your lower back. As with any new workout, be sure to tell the instructor that you have issues with your sciatic nerve so they can be sure to prevent any further injury.
Taking a daily walk is also a great, easy way to fight the the pain. You don’t have to go far or long to get your blood flowing in the right direction, and the fresh air will also relieve stress in your brain. Start with taking an easy 10 minute walk every day – you’ll be surprised by how much of a difference it can make!
And For When You Need More
There is also a guide called “Sciatica SOS” that includes a lot of low-impact exercises you can do at home. My dad has used this for his sciatic pain and always feels better when he’s done. There is plenty more to read about the science of sciatica in the guide as well – I thoroughly recommend it!
Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie Recipe
– 1 scoop of plant-based protein power
– 2 inch piece of ginger
– 2 cups leafy greens
– 1 cup celery
– 1 cup mixed frozen berries
– 1/2 cup filtered water
Blend and enjoy!