Your body contains hundreds of nerves, which coordinate with the spinal cord to serve specific purposes. According to research, there is a nerve that originates from the spinal cord running down to your feet, and it is considered to be the largest nerve in your body. This nerve is called the sciatic nerve. When the sciatic nerve gets irritated, compressed, or injured, it results in pain called sciatica. Sciatica can cause extreme discomfort, thus there is a need for early treatment. For the best in treating neuromusculoskeletal conditions, consult Dr.William L Yancey MD.
Signs and Symptoms That May Suggest the Presence of Sciatica
Mild pain, which can grow to the extreme with time
Difficulties in moving the hip joints
Loss of bowel and bladder control
Weak leg muscles, which may feel numbed
Sharp shooting pain in your lower back, buttocks, or down one or both legs
Sciatica is caused by abnormal spinal conditions. These conditions are caused by injuries, infections, or diseases. Below are the major causes of sciatica.
The Primary Causes of Sciatica
Herniated spinal discs. A herniated disc is the leading cause of sciatica. These discs add excessive pressure to the sciatic nerve any moment you rotate your waist. Studies show that one to five percent of adult Americans suffers from herniated discs at one point during their lifetime.
Spinal stenosis. This condition occurs when your spinal canal narrows down. The narrowing of the canal reduces the space, which affects the nerve traveling down the spine. The spinal discs compress nerves in the spinal canal, leading to sciatica.
Arthritis and diabetes. The leading diseases that affect joints and nerves are diabetes and arthritis. When the sciatic nerve becomes infected by diabetes, it results in pain.
Risk Factors That Can Increase the Occurrence of Sciatica
Some factors can make you develop sciatica even if you have no nerve infection. These factors include:
Lifestyle. People who smoke and drink alcohol are likely to develop sciatica. Smoke and alcohol damage your nerves and tissues around your spine.
Previous spinal injuries. After having a spinal injury, you may get treatment, but after some time, pain may arise. The main cause of pain is infections that you may have acquired after the injury.
Osteoarthritis may cause damage to your nerves, increasing the chance of sciatica.
Poor sitting and sleeping post. After a long day of working, you may fall into a deep sleep. The posture you slept in can cause stress to your sciatic nerve, leading to pain. On the other hand, you may sit on a chair that is not comfortable. The sciatic nerve may be stressed, leading to pain and numbness.
Strenuous activities. Strenuous activities can irritate some of your nerves, including the sciatic nerve.
Sciatica caused by disease infection can lead to surgery if not treated and managed early. It is vital to seek a qualified doctor to avoid excess pain and side effects after treatment. Yancey Pain & Spine Center has the best doctors you can consult for sciatica treatment.