Why is my back breaking? Find the answer!
Most of us will experience back pain some or the other times in our lives. There are different reasons for back pain and if not adhered to, it can lead to severe problems. One of the common types of pain is sciatica which is caused when the largest nerve in the body – the sciatic nerve is affected. Almost 40% of people experience sciatica. This is a large nerve extending from the lower back and down the back of each leg.
Sciatic pain may be treated through hot and cold therapies, epidural injections or medication, in cases which do not need surgery. If symptoms are not too severe, physical therapy is recommended. New Jersey sciatica treatment will help to relieve sciatic pain and prevent it from coming back. In cases which are severe, surgery is the next best option.
Sciatica or sciatic pain usually affects only one side of the body, waist downwards. Four places where this injury occurs are – inside the spinal canal, in the pelvis, the areas where nerve fibres pass through openings in the spine and in the area where the sciatic nerve exits the pelvis.
The pain extends from the lower back, through the back of the thigh and leg. Sometimes, even the foot or toes experience pain, depending on where the sciatic nerve is affected.
Some of the common symptoms which will help to identify this problem are:
- Pain in the leg or rear which is worsened when you sit.
- Weakness, difficulty or numbness, when moving the foot or leg.
- Tingling or burning down the leg.
- Difficulty in standing due to a shooting pain.
- Constant pain in one side of the rear.
Some people experience severe and constant pain. Others may feel pain at irregular or infrequent intervals. However, this pain should not be neglected as it has the potential of getting worse. Medical attention is best sought after if you experience pain, weakness or numbness in the lower body, including the loss of bowel or bladder control.
The primary cause of sciatica is when the lower lumbar and lumbosacral spine root/roots are affected and irritated.
What are the other causes of sciatica?
- Narrowing of the spinal canal in the lower back. This is known as lumbar spinal stenosis. This may occur due to ageing, arthritis, instability of the spine, tumours in the spine or trauma as in the case of accidents.
- Degenerative disc disease. This takes place when the discs (which act as cushions between the vertebrae) start breaking down.
- Spondylolisthesis – this occurs when the vertebra slips forward, one over the other; in most cases at the base of the spine. This is a defect or fracture of either one or both the wing shaped parts of a vertebra, which may result in the vertebrae slipping forward, backward, or over a bone.
- Being overweight, lack of exercise, wearing high heels most of the time, and sleeping on mattresses that are too soft.