Harvard Health Tips for Sciatica

peakhwChronic Pain, Sciatica Pain

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Sciatica is an extremely painful condition, and here in Utah, one that Alex J. Nelson, MD and his team of providers treats on a regular basis at Peak Health and Wellness. It’s a very specific kind of back pain that is both common yet persistently misunderstood. It’s estimated by Harvard Health that about 40 percent of people will have sciatica in their lifetime, and it becomes increasingly common as we age. Sometimes sciatica is lumped together with general back pain, but it very much belongs in its own category.

Best Tips for Your Sciatica

The good news is there are many ways to prevent sciatica, starting with exercise. Cardio and strength training are essential for everyone, but core training, in particular, is key for preventing and treating sciatica. The “core” includes the back as well as the abs and sides. When these muscles are strong, they provide spine support. Pilates, yoga, and other strength exercises can all target the core.

If you can avoid sitting for long stretches, you can also prevent sciatica. Set a timer if you have a sedentary lifestyle and get up at least every 30 minutes for stretching and a quick walk. A standing desk is an option for some people (but make sure you still practice good posture at these desks).

Maintaining a healthy weight is a must for preventing sciatica and improving the symptoms. This means not carrying excess weight or being underweight. More weight can lead to a herniated disc, and weighing too little can put you at risk of brittle bones from malnutrition.

Treat Your Pain – Schedule a Consultation Today

However, at the heart of all of these tips from Harvard is good posture. It takes practice, but you can teach your body that good posture is “natural” posture. Keep the shoulders back and the spine at its natural curve. For more information on preventing and treating sciatica, connect with Peak Health and Wellness today.