Sciatic nerve pain or “sciatica” is characterized by burning, tingling, or numbness in one side of the buttock or leg which is relatively constant. The cause is related to compression of spinal nerves as they exit the spine. ” Sciatica” is not a specific diagnosis but a collection of symptoms. The cause of sciatica is commonly due to other medical conditions such as a disc herniation, or degenerative changes of the lumbar spine which decreases the space impinging the nerves. Below are some common symptoms that people note during “sciatica”:
- Relatively constant pain on one side of the buttocks and/or hamstring.
- Hamstring or calve pain that is described as burning, tingling, or numb.
- Pain that is worse when walking or sitting
- Possible progressive weakness or “dead leg.”
When dealing with sciatica it is important to first visit a Chiropractic Physician or other spine specialist in order to obtain an accurate diagnosis. Contrary to past beliefs, “resting” the area more than a few days is not recommended. Resting more than a few days may lead to deconditioning of the surrounding muscles which may increase pressure on the irritated nerve(s) making symptoms worse. Additionally, the intervertebral discs in your spine serve as shock absorbers. There is no blood supply to the discs since they consist of cartilage. They rely on movement in order to imbibe water keeping the discs full, healthy, and nourished preventing desiccation and degenerative change. By incorporating the appropriate exercises (and eliminating some bad ones), you can strengthen the surrounding muscles, effectively decreasing pressure on the spine and preventing further occurrence’s or exacerbations. Below are 3 of my personal favorites for bracing the abdomen:
Begin on all four’s.
Take a deep breathe in through your nose slowly filling your belly with air.
Arch your back dropping your belly to the ground slowly; head up.
Begin to exhale slowly drawing your hips under your body by contracting your abdomen; hold 2-3 seconds.
Repeat cycle (1 cycle = 1 rep)
Begin by lying face down on a soft surface
Place your palms down as if in push-up position.
Leaving your thighs on the ground, begin to slowly press-up, lifting your upper torso off the ground; hold 2-3 seconds, then repeat.
3.) Pelvic Tilts-
Begin lying on your back face-up, knees bent.
Take a deep breathe in through your nose, arching your back slightly pushing your stomach out.
Exhale slowly, pushing your belly button through the floor by contracting your abdomen; hold 2-3 seconds, then repeat cycle (1 cycle = 1 rep).
As always, please consult a health professional before attempting to self-treat.
If you are currently experiencing sciatica pain, schedule an appointment and start healing today!
In todays world of health and fitness it may seem like everyone is an expert. All you have to do is log on to your Facebook or Instagram and you are probably flooded with advertisements for “building your dream body”, or “the best weight-loss coach ever”. So where do you start? Who to trust?
Everyone’s body reacts differently. To think that because one diet worked for your friend or training partner does not necessarily mean that it will work for you. Below are 3 common fallacy’s that many people will fall prey too. Avoid these mistakes and enjoy better results!
1.) Cookie-Cutter Diets: If you spend a decent amount of time in the gym you probably know of at least one person who is a self-proclaimed expert thinking that they have found the “secret” to that six pack you have been searching for. If it sounds too good to be true; it likely is! Much of nutrition (coach or not) is trial and error. Avoid a “one size fits all” diet. When searching for a coach look for someone who is willing to listen, assess your indidivdual needs, and take your lifestyle in to consideration. Avoid advice from anyone who proclaims “my diet plan will work for everyone.” You will likely find that you will save yourself a lot of time, and money.
2.) The Only Way to Lose Weight is to Eliminate Fats and Carbs from Your Diet: This is surprisingly common misconception that many people have. Often times I find that people are actually eating too little. It is true that many people are carbohydrate sensitive, but to think that you can never eat carbs is absurd. There is a time and place for all macros. When constructing an eating plan that works for you, I always recommend starting on the higher end of your recommended calories. Figure out your protein and fat intake first; carbs should fill in the remainder of calories. Keep in mind that healthy fats are essential for life. Fat’s should not be dropped below 20% of your daily caloric intake for any extended amount of time. This could actually slow-down your metabolism stall progress!
3.) Don’t ever eat after 6pm: Many people will preach only consuming calories for the first half of the day, stopping eating after 6pm. While this is feasible with an intermittent fasting type diet (read about intermittent fasting Here); it is not recommended for all body types and typically is not something I recommend without guidance. It is not when we eat, but what we eat that makes all the difference. Some lean protein and healthy fats throughout the evening can actually increase your metabolism and supercharge your weight-loss and muscle gain!
Avoid these common misconceptions and you will be off to a great start!
Looking for some professional help constructing a plan that meets your needs? Go to the Appointments tab and schedule a consultation.