What is Sciatica?
Like our previous blog posts regarding arm pain as a result of nerve problems, leg pain, thing pain, foot and ankle pain, glute and low back pain can be a result of nerve irritation in the lower extremity or spine. Of all the major nerves, the most common nerve problem is sciatic nerve compression. While sciatic nerve problems can emerge from structural issues in the spine, pregnancy, and conditions such as diabetes, soft tissue compression of the sciatic nerve is quite common!
Where can the sciatic nerve get compressed?
By far, the most common compression of the sciatic nerve is the piriformis muscle. Often referred to as piriformis syndrome, tension in this muscle will often press on the sciatic nerve, creating pain in the leg, thigh, foot and ankle. Another place where the sciatic nerve can be compressed is at the hamstring muscles. The sciatic nerve travels deep in between the hamstring complex on its way into the lower leg. If a person has tight hamstrings, sciatic pain can follow shortly after due to compression. Finally, as the sciatic passes through the calf region, tension in the calf complex can be a source of sciatic irritation, although the issue tends to come from above.
What can I do about sciatic pain?
Like our previous explorations, there are a couple of key components for releasing nerve tension:
- Nerve flossing
- Myofascial release
Outside of these interventions, things such as diet, stress, sleep, and trauma can all play a roll. Stay tuned into our Instagram page (@bodyhealtherapy) as we post some effective, at home interventions for sciatic pain!