Sciatica and low back pain: what is it and what can I do?

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Sciatica and low back pain: what is it and what can I do?

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What is Sciatica?

Sciatica is the name given to any sort of pain or change in sensation that is caused by compression or irritation of the sciatic nerve.

This nerve is the longest nerve in the body. It runs from the back of the pelvis, across the buttocks, down the legs and all the way into the feet. When this nerve is compressed it can cause pain, numbness, pins and needles, even muscle weakness in the affected the leg. This can radiate from the lower back, down the leg even as far as the foot. It may be sore anywhere along this pathway (not necessarily along the full length of the nerve).

Sciatica is most common between the ages of 40 and 50 and is more common in men than women.

What causes sciatica?

There are many different causes of sciatica, ranging from trauma to your back, muscular tightness, inflammation, changes to spinal discs or even the stresses and strains caused by pregnancy. A full assessment will help to establish the cause and develop a treatment plan for your specific needs.

What can I do about sciatica and what treatment will I need?

If your pain is persistent, visit Physiotherapy Bangor for a consultation and treatment where we will help you to develop a treatment plan to manage this painful condition. Alternatively you can visit your GP. (You should call 999 or attend Accident and Emergency if you lose sensation between your legs and around your buttock and/or lose bladder or bowel control, although this is very rare it could be the sign of a serious condition called cauda equina.)

Further Information

We hope to see you soon at Physiotherapy Bangor.

Call 0777 9363613 or click here to request an appointment

Visit us for a consultation where you will have a full assessment, treatment and advice to develop a plan for self-management of this painful condition.

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Kate Hayes

Author: Kate Hayes

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