Do you experience pain in your low back that streaks down the back of your leg? Is your foot going numb frequently? Does your hip hurt so much that you can’t lie on your side at night?
Sciatica is the inflammation of the sciatic nerve in your body. The sciatic nerves begin in your low back, run partway across the bum, and then down each leg, ending in your feet. They are the longest and largest nerves in your body. Inflammation can present a number of ways, including numbness and weakness, or pain that is burning, throbbing, or aching in your low back, glutes, hamstrings, calves, and feet. The severity of pain can range from mild to debilitating.
The meridians largely affected in sciatica are the Bladder and Gallbladder. In fact, a large portion of the Bladder channel traverses the sciatic nerve. An individual’s treatment plan will be tailored specifically to one’s symptoms. In an acute flare, treatment is recommended two or three times per week for two or three weeks and then reducing treatment frequency when your body starts to hold the treatments, providing longer relief between visits. In a more mild case, weekly treatment for six weeks might be all that is needed.
Acupuncture can be an alternative or complementary treatment for sciatica, as it reduces the painful inflammation of the nerve and can treat the root cause, whether it be due to a herniated or degenerative disc in your low back, stenosis, piriformis syndrome, bone spur, or muscle spasms. In debilitating cases, acupuncture can complement the use of NSAIDS, muscle relaxants, narcotic pain relievers, and steroidal injections, because it can help you stay sensitive to these modalities so that they are effective when needed. In more mild cases, acupuncture can often be the sole avenue of relief. Whatever your case may be, acupuncture is worth your time pursuing to give a good swift kick to the stinging pain of sciatica.
[written by Kennedy]