Man with a brain injury
10 Ways Occupational Therapy Can Help With Brain Injury
February 1, 2019
Knee sprain treatment at Pillars of Wellness
How Chiropractic Can Help With Knee Sprain?
February 6, 2019

How Yoga Therapy Can Help You With Sciatica? Experts

Yoga therapy can treat sciatica

All you need to know about yoga therapy and sciatica treatment

Have you ever had a family member complain to you about a ‘throbbing’ in their leg? Has there been a complaint about sharp bursts of pain in the lower back? If the answer to both these questions is positive, then it is possible that you or your loved one might be experiencing sciatica symptoms.

Before we go into the technical details, let us look at the case of forty-seven-year-old Benjamin. Working as a marketing manager in the corporate sector, Benjamin has a work experience of more than twenty years. His life was quite normal. He spent the first eight hours of his day in the office before returning home to his wife and two daughters. Benjamin’s lifestyle did not give him the time to indulge in a lot of leisure sports. However, he did make sure to jog every morning.

On a regular morning run, Benjamin started feeling a strange numbness in his left leg. He slowed down, but the discomfort persisted. By the time he returned home, his entire leg seemed to be throbbing with pain. He found it difficult to sit down because of the sharp pain in his lower back. Every time he moved, the pain began anew. He says that he felt like it got more intense with every passing minute. He took some medication and called in sick to work.

Benjamin was in utter pain for two complete days before his wife started looking for other solutions. She brought her husband into Pillars of Wellness in Burlington. A friend of theirs suggested looking at physiotherapy as an option. At the clinic, Benjamin was told that he was indeed experiencing sciatica symptoms.

What is sciatica?

The sciatic nerve is the largest single nerve in the body. It plays the important function of connecting the spinal cord to the muscles of the leg and the foot. The spinal cord is the powerhouse of the body. It houses the central nervous system which allows for the body’s immunization and movement. The nerve runs along both sides of the lower spine, deep into the Gluteus Maximus, and through the leg to the feet.

Any disorders associated with the sciatic nerve are termed under sciatica. Sciatica symptoms may appear due to neurological or physical problems. Since it is a disease of the nerves, it is linked to brain-related issues. But the most common cause of sciatica is a physical compression or movement in the spinal cord. In medical terms, sciatica is known as lumbar radiculopathy. Lumbar is associated with the lower spine. Radiculopathy implies pain that originates due to a radicular nerve in the spine.

What are the causes of sciatica?

Sciatica occurs mostly due to inflammation or compression in the spinal cord. Doctors often look for a herniated disc in the spine which might be putting pressure on the sciatic nerve. Nerves are intensely sensitive. A herniated disc is a dislocated disc. This is a bigger issue than sciatic pain alone. A herniated disc can cause more problems than just sciatic pain. It can offset the balance and movement of the entire body. It can also cause immunization problems in some cases.

The other leading cause for sciatica symptoms is related to the piriformis. The piriformis is a small muscle located deep in the hip. The function of the piriformis is to rotate your hip. It may be possible that the piriformis can be exerting pressure on the sciatic nerve. That can also cause a great deal of pain.

Since the pain is caused due to the sciatic nerve, symptoms for both these causes may be similar. However, there are some subtle differences, which we shall read about ahead. Back problems with sciatica symptoms are among the leading conditions of pain in Canada. The people who display these symptoms are usually between 30 to 50 years of age.

What are sciatica symptoms?

Sciatica symptoms appear in many ways. Some of the most common and prevalent are as follows:

  • Consistent throbbing pain on one side of the buttock or the leg. Sciatica pain rarely occurs in both legs.
  • Radiating pain that seems to originate from the lower spine and continue downwards through the thigh and to the foot.
  • The pain is often sharp rather than dull. Even the throbbing in this condition is searing.
  • Numbness and tingling down one leg.
  • Weakness in the legs. It may cause your knees to buckle as you stand up.
  • The pain may be initially felt while standing, but it gets worse as you sit down.
  • Burning and tingling sensations in your thigh.
  • Fatigue in your thigh or your foot. Foot drop is also a symptom of sciatica. Foot drop occurs when you have difficulty putting your entire foot on the ground. Especially in putting down the heel.

How can yoga therapy help?

Sciatica cases seldom require secondary treatment like surgery. More information on the details of treatment procedures can be found in this study. Usually, with proper physical treatment and care, the pain subsides. Benjamin was led to our yoga therapy department. Yoga has been around for more than 4000 years. Yoga therapy employs a systematic approach to yoga poses in order to enhance mental and physical well-being.

Even if the sciatica is caused by a herniated disc, it doesn’t often require surgery. A yoga therapist looks at your physical history and diagnosis in order to ascertain which particular poses can assist your condition. However, it is important to understand the severity of your condition. It is necessary to get expert advice before you choose a particular therapy type.

Yoga therapy also assists in cases where the cause of the sciatica is the piriformis. Yoga can help with stretching the muscle, offering relief and comfort. The source of Benjamin’s sciatica was a slight inflammation in the spinal cord. Because he had sought medical help so early, it was possible for primary therapy to assist in treatment. After a systematic yoga therapy schedule that lasted two weeks, Benjamin was back at work. Yoga therapy assists with both physical well-being and the treatment of musculoskeletal disorders. If you feel like you are suffering from sciatica symptoms, seek professional medical help immediately.

Aura Davila
Aura Davila
Aura has been teaching yoga for over 6 years and she is extremely dedicated to create a safe environment for students and to support in the correct body alignments, focusing in the mind and spirit exploration for yogis in all levels.