Are you struggling with sciatica? Wondering, “how long does it take for sciatica to go away” or what you can do to speed up your recovery? We’re here to help!
In this article, we’re covering everything you need to know about sciatica, including what it is, how long it lasts, and what recovery looks like. So, you can deal with your condition in the most effective way possible.
Sciatica is a type of pain that radiates along your sciatic nerve, a nerve that extends from your lower back through each leg. It most commonly occurs after an accident or injury that causes a disc to herniate and compress your sciatic nerve. Sciatica can also be caused by a bone spur, spinal stenosis, pregnancy, and even muscle spasms.
Sciatic pain range from light pain to sharp, shooting pain. Its most common symptoms include:
Sciatica may go away on its own, but it can persist. Especially if it’s a more serious case. If you’re experiencing a severe case of sciatica, visit your doctor to find out what treatment options work best for you.
How long your sciatica lasts depends on if it’s an acute or chronic case. If it’s acute, it should only last a few weeks. You may experience several sciatic episodes throughout the year though, all of which will have different recovery times.
If your sciatica lasts longer than a few weeks, you most likely have chronic sciatica. This means you’ll experience some level of pain pretty regularly with less severity than an acute case. Unfortunately, it also means your sciatica is a life-long condition which you’ll have to monitor for and actively treat.
Sciatica is an often-painful condition that can disrupt your daily routine. Thankfully, it often does respond well to self-care. Anti-inflammatory medications, like aspirin and ibuprofen, can effectively reduce the painful swelling associated with sciatica. Alternating hot and cold packs can also provide temporary relief.
While it may seem counterintuitive, sciatica responds best to some activity. So, don’t spend too much time in bed resting. Instead, try to exercise regularly to maintain strength in your back. And do your best to maintain good posture and avoid bending over or squatting to pick up heavy objects.
Additionally, physical therapy and chiropractic care can help you deal with sciatica. That’s because it can teach you the core and back strengthening techniques that will help prevent future flareups. In many cases, physical therapy and other treatment options like chiropractic care are covered by your insurance.
There are other medical options if these treatments prove ineffective. Your pain management doctor may recommend a steroid injection, which is injected into the area surrounding the nerve to reduce inflammation. There are potential side effects though, so talk to your doctor before you pursue that option.
Surgery is a last resort option that you should only turn to if your sciatica is causing bladder or bowel control issues. That’s because it’s often ineffective and comes with some potential risks.
Sciatica can be a painful and frustrating condition to deal with. But you shouldn’t lose hope as there are ways to treat it! Now that we’ve answered “how long does it take for sciatica to go away?” and covered available treatments, you can find the option that works best for you!
Are you experiencing sciatica? Not sure what you should do first? Call 1-800-897-8440 to find a doctor near you so you can start treating your condition today!
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