Sciatica pain can be caused due to various medical conditions and its treatment lies in identifying the cause. Treatment is only effective when the root cause of your pain is correctly identified as sciatica and not the symptom of another disease. Treatments for sciatica can be categorized in two categories; short term and long term.


The primary concern in curing sciatica is to reduce any pressure being exerted on the sciatic nerve. This is done successfully when the exact diagnosis is identified. Short term treatments focus on giving patients temporary relief from sciatica pain; as it can be excruciating and unbearable at times. Short term treatments should never be considered as permanent treatment. It can help alleviate stress by reducing pain temporarily, but you should still search for a more permanent cure.



Short term treatments


Chiropractic manipulation is one option patients can look at for temporary relief. However; you must be very careful in choosing a chiropractor as any miscalculated manipulation of the spinal cord can do more harm than good. In fact, there are instances of chiropractic appointments leading to slipped discs.


Analgesic drugs can be taken for temporary relief from sciatica pain; as there are instances when the pain makes you literally immobile. Like all drugs, analgesics should be taken only when required, as they come with their share of side effects and can cause further complications if taken inappropriately.


Massages of the affected area can also be done for short term relief. Find an experienced masseur who is knowledgeable and does not end up applying too much pressure to the affected area. Massages should be done with light strokes they will end up giving you more pain than relief.


Epidural steroid injections are another temporary treatment for sciatica pain. These steroids are anti-inflammatory in nature, and help in bringing instant relief especially when pain killers are unable to alleviate.


Cold compresses placed on the affected area is a temporary treatment that can lower the pain temporarily but would not help in removing the pain altogether.


Long term treatments


It is quite clear that short term treatments are available to provide temporary relief at the moment; but if you want to find a complete cure then you have no other option but find a long term treatment. If your sciatica pain is due to a slipped disc, surgery is the only alternative. Surgery could be done in two ways, discectomy or microdiscectomy.


With discectomy, a surgeon would remove a portion of the disc that has moved and is compressing the sciatica nerve. In microdiscectomy the surgery is done with the help of a microscope and just a small incision is made to remove the part of the disc causing the problem. The success rate of both surgeries is more or less the same but the recovery time of microdiscectomy is faster than discectomy.


In the long run, if one wants to have a healthy back and avoid sciatica pain, using correct posture and regular exercise an acceptable solution. Avoid any sudden movements; let your limbs stretch and allow the body to be prepared for movement. Get up slowly, let the legs dangle for a while, stand firmly on your feet, stretch a bit and then walk. Regular walking, swimming, stretching exercises, and maintaining good posture can help you keep sciatica pain at bay.

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