Sciatic pain, which is caused by the sciatic nerve, can best be described as radiating pain that can travel from the low back down one of your legs. Most people who experience sciatic pain will only have pain on one side of their body. The sciatic nerve can become irritated or inflamed for a few reasons, whether from a herniated disc, a bone spur, muscle tension or injury to the sciatic nerve.
The pain from sciatica irritation or compression can be sudden or constant, and it can be an unpleasant burning sensation or create numbness in one of your legs. People experience sciatica pain differently, but if you have any of these symptoms, it may help to seek sciatica treatment at our pain and wellness center.
Fortunately, there are some exercises you can do at home to improve your sciatica discomfort—here are a few of them!
1. Foam Rolling Exercises
For this exercise, you’ll need a foam roller. Laying on the ground, place the foam roller underneath your extended legs and lean to the side, putting your weight on one side of your body to work your glute. Using your body weight on the foam roller, gently roll back and forth for up to 60 seconds before switching to the other side.
2. Piriformis Stretches
The piriformis muscle is a muscle in your buttock that goes from your lower back to your upper thigh. Your sciatic nerve goes either under or through this muscle. Stretching this muscle can help with sciatica pain, especially if your piriformis muscles are tense.
To stretch your piriformis, lay flat on your back (you can use a pillow under your head for more comfort) and bend one of your knees up to the opposite site of your chest, placing your hands interlaced on top of your knee and pulling it in as much as is comfortable.
You can hold this position for up to 30 seconds on each side. Be sure that you’re not rotating your hips off the ground when doing this exercise—lay as flat as possible while pulling your knee to your chest.
Another stretch you can do to help a tense piriformis muscle is to use a lacrosse ball and place it under one buttock while laying flat on the ground, lifting your hips to roll your muscles across the ball to work out any tension. If you find a tense spot, you can pause on this area. You can do this for up to 60 seconds per side.
3. Phase I & Phase II Dead Bug Exercises
This exercise has two variations, depending on your level of comfort.
For Phase I, lay on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground. Lift one of your legs to hip level—not past your hips—and your opposite arm above your head. During this exercise, keep your core tight and engaged to support your spine.
In Phase II, lay completely flat with your legs extended. Bending your knee, lift one of your legs to hip level and the opposite arm above your head. Alternate sides and do three sets of 5-10 repetitions on each side if you can.
Let Us Assist You With Sciatica Treatment
As a pain and wellness center, Summit Spine & Joint can help you with your sciatica treatment so you experience pain relief and improved mobility, all with minimally invasive treatment options. Call us at (770) 962-3642 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with one of our board-certified physicians today!