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Do you or someone you know have sciatica? We can help!

Sciatica is a common cause of leg pain and can be caused by a number of different issues. Sciatica symptoms often include back pain, tingling or numbness in the legs and feet, muscle weakness, and intense pain that radiates down one side of your buttock or thigh into the lower leg. Acupuncture has been shown in clinical studies to help relieve sciatica symptoms. Acupuncture may also be combined with other therapies like physical therapy or chiropractic treatment.

What causes Sciatica?

Sciatica is caused by irritation of the sciatic nerve—a large nerve that runs from the lower back down through each buttock and down both legs. The sciatic nerve is made up of many smaller nerves that branch off from the spine.

The lower back area and hip area are common areas for problems with this large nerve, especially when there's inflammation in these areas due to arthritis or injury (like from falling). Sciatica can also be caused by disc issues in your lower back, which pinch or irritate nearby nerves as they exit your spine near your tailbone (coccyx).The pain may be worse when sitting or standing. It may also be worse when sneezing or coughing.

Sometimes piriformis syndrome is mistaken for sciatica. While both conditions interfere with sciatic nerve function, sciatica results from spinal dysfunction such as a herniated disc or spinal stenosis. Piriformis syndrome, on the other hand, occurs when the piriformis muscle, located deep in the buttock, compresses the sciatic nerve.

What can I do at home to help relieve my symptoms?

  • Rest while also moving enough so that you don't get stiff.
  • Use ice to reduce swelling and pain.
  • Massage the affected area, if you tolerate it.
  • Stretch your muscles and move around as much as possible, but avoid any activity that causes more pain or tightness in the back, hips or legs.
  • You may need to actually strengthen hip flexors, which get weak from sitting too much. (see video)


What treatments are available for Sciatica?

A variety of treatments are available for sciatica. Acupuncture, chiropractic and physical therapy can help. If back pain is persistent or severe, you may need to see a doctor for medication or injections.

Acupuncture is a form of traditional Chinese medicine that has been used for centuries to treat various health conditions. Acupuncture works by stimulating the nervous system and can help to reduce pain, improve mobility, and reduce inflammation, as well as relieve muscular spasms.

I have personally helped many people with sciatica, often resulting in complete relief. In some cases, acupuncture helps to reduce pain as they wait for their injections or surgery. Surgery may be necessary in order to remove bone spurs pressing against nerve roots and/or scar tissue causing compression on the nerves. In these cases, I have helped patients recover more quickly after their surgery.

In my experience, it is best to seek help quickly so that the pain doesn't interfere with your life for very long. Other parts of our body will compensate and get tight, throwing everything out of alignment.

If you or someone you care about is suffering from sciatica, please contact us today at 619-325-0771!


Dr. Chantelle DeShazer, L.Ac. Ph.D. MTOM
Sciatica, Hip, and Glute Pain Relief Videos
Here are some videos and channels I have found helpful. Please check with your health practitioner for specific exercises for your condition.
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Meridian Acupuncture & Wellness Center Inc
2831 Camino Del Rio South, Suite 218, San Diego CA 92108