The sciatic nerve is one of the largest nerves in the body. It begins at the lower spine and runs through the buttocks and down the lower limb to the foot. This nerve provides movement, feeling and strength in the legs.
About 40% of the world’s population will suffer from sciatica at some point in their lives. Sciatica is a condition that can cause pain, numbness, tingling, and weakness in the lower limbs, but it is often mistaken for lower back pain or even leg cramps. It starts as a pressure or pinch on the nerve, and then continues as a pain down the back to the legs.
You can experience a mild ache and numbness, or a sharp, burning and extremely painful sensation that affects one side of the body. The pain and discomfort can require people to stay in bed, and most of them often take ibuprofen or some other over-the-counter medication to relieve the pain.
In this article, we will give you eight natural ways to treat the inflammation and relieve the pain.
Acupuncture is an alternative treatment, which includes the insertion of hair-fine needles at certain body points, aiming to help the nerve function and boost energy.
The relief of this therapy is felt even after the first treatment, but a few sessions can do miracles for the pain. Nowadays, acupuncture is extremely popular, as it has been shown to be effective in the case of migraines, stress, giving up smoking, and also to stimulate the lymph flow.
2. Chiropractic Adjustments
Research has shown that chiropractic adjustments can be effective in treating this issue, as the manipulation of the spine can alleviate pain, promote healing, treat inflammation, restore mobility, and enhance function.
3. Ice Packs
A cold pack applied to the area of pain can reduce inflammation, thus relieving pain. It’s most effective when pain is worst, usually two to seven days after the onset of sciatica.
4. Alternate Cold and Hot
Alternating between hot and cold compresses on your lower will stimulate blood and lymph flow, relieving pain and giving your body a break.
You can also use hydrotherapy by taking a hot bath with Epsom salt and soothing essential oils to open up your blood and lymph vessels and follow up with an ice-cold shower to close them back up.
5. Mild yoga stretches
Although movement when you experience sciatica pain is generally painful, in order to speed up the healing process, you need to be active. By doing mild yoga moves you will better your mobility, strengthen the back muscles, and encourage proper blood flow.
Trigger point therapies or deeper massages can provide great results in treatment of numbness in the toes and legs, muscle spasms, and pain.
7. Herbs And Oils
Numerous natural herbs can provide great effects, as they reduce inflammation and treat pain. These herbs can be used via infused oils, capsules, salves, and liniments.
Furthermore, you can use these herbs in tinctures, elixirs, essential oils, and tea from fresh or dried herbs, and alleviate pain.
Yet, before you start using natural herbs, consult your doctor, in order to check if they interfere with some medications you take. These are the most helpful herbs you can use in order to reduce inflammation, and pain, and support nerve health: turmeric, roman chamomile, devil’s claw, white willow bark, milky oat tops, clary sage, lavender, licorice, St. John’s wort, skullcap, linden flower, Jamaican dogwood, kratom, arnica, etc.
Last, but not least, try to get enough sleep. In doing so, this will give your nerves and body time to relax, heal and balance. Extra sleep and rest will help rebuild and strengthen your nerves.
Even though these complementary and alternative remedies are not confirmed by scientific evidence, many people have experienced significant improvements, and have managed to control pain, spasms, numbness, and cramps.
If the symptoms and pain last longer than a few weeks, be sure to consult a doctor, as there is the possibility that you have a dislocated vertebrae, or some other condition that is causing pressure or pinching your nerves. If necessary, surgery is always an option.