Let’s begin by defining sciatica. Sciatica is a symptomatic term that describes leg pain caused by the compression/irritation of any of the branches of the sciatic nerve. With sciatica, these pinched or compressed nerves typically cause pain, weakness, numbness/tingling, loss of sensation or a combination of these symptoms.
Sciatica is very common, affecting more than 3 million people per year in the United States. Common causes of sciatica include bulging or herniated discs, bone spurs, inflammation or degeneration of the vertebrae or disc at the spinal levels of the sciatic nerve.
What can be done to treat sciatica?
There are numerous treatment options when it comes to sciatica. For the purpose of this article, we will discuss non-surgical spinal decompression therapy as a treatment option.
Sciatica caused by either a disc bulge/herniation, disc degeneration, facet joint inflammation or other conditions such as spondylolisthesis can be alleviated with the use of spinal decompression therapy.
Non-surgical spinal decompression therapy involves a specialized table which, once the patient is properly placed, slowly and methodically separates the involved spinal vertebrae utilizing computer-controlled traction. The separation that is created during decompression allows blood flow and other key nutrients to reach the disc, which is vital as intervertebral discs lack a direct vascular blood supply. The separation creates a vacuum phenomenon that “sucks” the bulged/herniated portion of the disc back into its intended place while also providing the aforementioned blood supply and nutrients to the damaged disc allowing healing to progress.
The end goal of spinal decompression therapy is to not only relieve the symptoms of sciatica or disc disorders but actually heal the injured disc which is unique to this type of treatment. Many other available treatment options for sciatica will simply mask the symptoms by reducing inflammation rather than healing the disc at the cellular level as happens with non-surgical spinal decompression therapy.
Where can I be treated with non-surgical spinal decompression?
Hopefully, you never have to, however, if you are reading this article, we are certain you have experienced the pains of sciatica.
Many chiropractic offices throughout the country utilize spinal decompression as an effective tool in treating the wide array of conditions mentioned above. Whether you think you are suffering from sciatica or not, a quick chiropractic consultation and examination can answer those questions and properly diagnose your condition.