“Sciatica pain” is the result of inflammation or irritation of a nerve that causes shooting pain down one or both legs. Often times, people refer to radicular pain, or irritation of a spinal nerve root, as sciatica even though it is not the actual sciatic nerve that is inflamed. The sciatic nerve begins in the low back, reaches through the piriformis muscle in the buttock, and continues down the back of the leg into the foot. Radicular pain is a common pain condition characterized by numbness, tingling, and/or pain in the buttock that often radiates down the leg. Common causes of this type of pain include disc herniations, piriformis syndrome, and other types of injuries.. Dr. DeCaria, an anesthesiologist and pain physician in Evanston, IL and Glenview, IL is skilled at diagnosing the root cause of your sciatica symptoms and effectively treating sciatica pain from many different conditions through her unique approach that utilizes conventional medicine, as well as integrative and functional medicine.
Each person’s pain is different and requires a unique, individualized treatment plan tailored to one’s needs to give the maximum relief possible. By discussing your symptoms, experiences, and habits with you, Dr. DeCaria will determine how to best eliminate your pain. Below are the most common approaches to minimizing, and hopefully eliminating, sciatica pain:
- Physical Therapy is a conservative option to minimize your pain. A physical therapist will guide you through a rehabilitation program specifically made for your pain and to prevent future pain. This can include exercises to strengthen your muscles or improve flexibility, and often requires home exercises upon instruction.
- Medications can be used to alleviate your sciatic pain. These vary from anti-inflammatory medications, pain relieving medications, muscle relaxants, or more. Some over the counter pain medications can be used short term and with caution to help your pain, however, overuse of medications without proper guidance from a physician can cause further issues.
- Acupuncture or Steroid/Cortisone Injections can help reduce the pain by injecting a corticosteroid medication into the area around the nerve root causing your pain. These injections will help minimize pain by reducing inflammation in this area. Pain relief from these injections will vary depending on your pain and the root cause, but most people will find relief for a few months. Acupuncture can also be a very effective and less invasive option. At Revitalize Medical Center, we offer all these therapies.
- Ice/Heat throughout the day can keep any swelling or inflammation down and provide relief. Depending on the stage of your condition, Dr. DeCaria will recommend either ice or heat. In some cases, heat will actually help reduce your sciatic pain. This can be done through a warm bath or shower or using a heating pad. Others may benefit from alternating between ice and heat. Depending on your pain, Dr. DeCaria can guide you in which of these methods may be more effective for you!
- Lifestyle Adjustments: For some people, simple lifestyle changes may need to be made to alleviate the pain. As an integrative clinic, we work closely with lifestyle changes, ergonomic recommendations, and topical therapies or diet changes to optimize our patients’ overall health and wellbeing.
- It is best to sit in a supportive chair, as much as possible (i.e. sitting in a dining chair versus the couch). Using a seat cushion could provide a lot of sciatic relief. You can use this while driving, traveling in a plane, or sitting at home or at work.
- Having a healthy diet and adding certain supplements into your diet can also help your overall health and minimize sciatic pain. A balanced food plan and avoiding excessive processed foods can be helpful.
- Having a guided exercise/stretching plan can help strengthen your muscles and minimize pain. Light aerobic activities like walking or water exercises are extremely beneficial. Incorporating stretching into your day can also help decrease sciatic pain. Stretching and home exercises can increase muscle flexibility and endurance.
Although the exact cause of sciatic pain can be difficult to diagnose, we are skilled at diagnosing and offering a variety of treatment options at the Revitalize Medical Center. These procedures include, but are not limited to, acupuncture, epidural steroid injections, nerve blocks, and more. In order to deliver the best pain relief, Dr. DeCaria will discuss your pain history and experiences with you in order to determine the best course of treatment for your sciatic pain. Call Revitalize Medical Center to book your appointment in Glenview, IL or Evanston, IL with Dr. DeCaria today and put an end to your pain!
Schedule your appointment with Dr. DeCaria of Revitalize Medical Center in Glenview and Evanston, IL, to take the first step towards a long-term solution for your chronic pain!
Service areas: Glenview, Evanston, Wilmette, Highland Park, Chicago, Rogers Park, Winnetka, Lake Forest, Kenosha, Arlington Heights, Schaumburg, Des Plaines, Skokie, Northbrook, Northfield, and more!
This website (including all pages and blog posts) is not intended to replace the services of a physician, nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Information is provided for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating a medical or health condition.