What is a Pinched Nerve
A pinched nerve is a type of damage or injury to either a nerve or a set of nerves. A pinched nerve occurs when there is too much pressure on surrounding tissues around the nerve, interrupting the nerve’s function.
Symptoms of a pinched nerve may be tingling, pain, numbness or weakness in a particular area.
What is a Sciatic Nerve
Running from the base of the spinal cord through to the feet is the largest nerve in the body. This nerve is the sciatic nerve.
Causes of a Pinched Sciatic Nerve
A common cause of a pinched sciatic nerve is a herniated lumbar disc. A herniated disc occurs when the disc ruptures in the area of the back and side. This may be either the left or right side. This rupture usually pinches a nerve in the spinal canal and more often than not, causes sciatica.
The nerve in the pelvic area exits from the inside to the outside of the pelvis through the muscle.
It is one of the most common places of an entire pinched sciatic nerve and affects the buttocks and legs depending on the area of the pelvis that suffers from tension or spasms.
Diagnosing a Pinched Sciatic Nerve
Your physician will be able to perform an examination and/or tests to determine whether you suffer from lumbar or pelvic sciatica. Symptoms may vary with each form of sciatica and can be distinguished by the following:
Pelvic sciatica is typically worse when in a seated position, however standing or walking often provides relief. With lumbar sciatica, being seated in certain positions often provides relief of pain and discomfort.
Treatment for a Pinched Sciatic Nerve
Your doctor will be able to determine the appropriate treatment for your condition. Treatment may include:
- Bed rest
- Over the counter medication, muscle relaxants, anti-inflammatory medication
- To relieve pressure from the disc on the sciatic nerve, many patients find that by placing a pillow under their knees while lying down very effective
- Use a firm mattress or rest on the floor; sit in a firm or hard backed chair
- Heat/ice to your back and legs - it is most effective in alternating between the two
- When sitting or lying down, it is important that when getting up, no strain is placed on your back
- Don’t lift or bend