Sciatica, unfortunately, is a common condition that affects many Americans, and we treat a lot of in our office. Essentially, it affects specifically the sciatic nerve hence sciatica. Now, the sciatic nerve originates in your lower back, and it actually finishes in your foot. The nerve is the thickest nerve in your body, and it is about as thick as your thumb, so once it is inflamed it is a very difficult condition to treat.
The two most common causes of sciatica are damage to degenerative discs in your lower back and/or adhesion in the tissue surrounding the nerve. This is why the condition should be evaluated and treated by a healthcare professional that is trained in treating both the spine and the surrounding soft tissue.
Sciatica is often caused by too much sitting. If you sit for a living, we need to build in those good work habits. Practice good posture while at your desk. And try standing for the last 20 minutes of the hour with a standup desk.
Another really important point and another common cause is a weak core. Our bodies are super economical, so when we sit for a living our core doesn’t activate, so it just becomes weak. This offers minimal stabilization to the lower back and pelvis. Again, good work habits are really key. If you sit for a living, try adding some basic core to your weekly routine, and by doing that you should be able to maintain good stabilization of the hips and the lower back. With good stabilization of the hips and lower back you can have less incidence of this sciatica.
The last point has got to be take care of it when it is a problem and not a crisis. What I mean by that is immediately. The longer we leave the issue the harder it is to treat. Usually the joint and/or the tissue just breaks down further and, obviously, the more damage we have to the joint and the tissue usually means the problem gets worse and makes it harder for us to treat.