Five Myths about Sciatica Pain

Five Myths about Sciatica Pain

Posted By Georgia Accident Rehab Centers || 17-Aug-2015

Sciatica refers to pain, tingling, numbness, or weakness in the leg that originates in the lower back, travels through the buttock, and then down the sciatic nerve at the back of the leg. Sciatic nerve pain occurs when the sciatic nerve is irritated or pinched in the lumbar spine, and is a symptom of an underling medical condition such as degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis, or a lumbar herniated disc. Pain from sciatica can vary from infrequent and annoying to constant and debilitating, depending on the location and severity of the underlying condition.

Sciatica pain generally only affects one side of the body, and usually includes one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Pain is worse when sitting
  • Pain is often described as burning or tingling as opposed to a dull ache
  • Sharp pain that makes it difficult to stand or walk
  • Weakness or numbness in the leg or foot that make them difficult to move

Sciatica is a common disorder that affects 40 percent of the population at some point in their lives. Despite its prevalence and the availability of treatment, there are still many myths surrounding sciatic nerve pain that we have addressed below.

Myth: Sciatica is caused by leg problems.

Leg pain may lead people to think that sciatica is caused by leg problems, but the real source of the problem lies in the spine. Common causes of sciatica actually have nothing to do with the leg, including spinal tumors, sciatic nerve tumor or injury, spondylolisthesis, and spinal stenosis.

Myth: All patients with sciatica experience the exact same symptoms.

The experience of sciatica varies from patient to patient depending on the location of the pinched nerve. Some patients may feel numbness or tingling while others report a burning or searing sensation. Some patients recover from their pain relatively quickly, while others may experience worsening pain that may persist for much longer.

Myth: Sciatica only affects sedentary people.

While sciatica does usually affect people with more sedentary lifestyles, active people can develop sciatic nerve pain, too. They may be at risk for developing the condition particularly if they engage in activities that involve heavy lifting or frequent twisting.

Myth: Sciatica does not result in permanent nerve damage.

While permanent nerve damage is rare, it can happen. If you experience symptoms such as bowel or bladder incontinence or increasing loss of sensation in the leg, get immediate medical attention as this may indicate a more serious condition.

Myth: If I have sciatica, I’m stuck with my pain forever.

Fortunately, there are plenty of effective medical treatments out there for patients suffering from sciatic pain. The medical professionals at Georgia Accident Rehab Centers offer a wide range of non-invasive medical treatment options to manage your symptoms, including physical therapy, massage, and chiropractic adjustments. You will be individually assessed by your doctor to determine the most effective course of treatment for your sciatica so that you can experience relief.

To learn more about how we can get you on the path to recovery, please call us today at (404) 620-4020.

Blog Home