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Benefits of Acupuncture for Sciatica

You’ve probably heard the phrase ‘sciatica’ or ‘sciatic pain’ before. Nearly 40% of people will experience the symptoms of sciatica at some point in their lifetime. But do you know what this condition is, how to tell if you’re experiencing it, and most importantly, your treatment options?

Continue reading to learn how acupuncture for sciatica can restore comfort to your everyday life.

What is Sciatica?

Sciatica describes the radiating pain in the low back, buttocks, and legs that occurs when the sciatic nerve becomes compressed at the root or by surrounding inflammation. The sciatic nerve is the longest and widest nerve in the body, stretching from the back all the way down to the feet, which explains why you may experience pain throughout your entire lower region.

Causes

Problems or obstructions anywhere along the sciatic nerve can lead to pain. However, the most common causes for this issue include:

  • Bulging or herniated disc
  • Tight muscles pressing on the nerve (if this trigger point is in the buttocks, it is referred to as piriformis syndrome)
  • Disc degeneration
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Muscle spasms
  • Pregnancy

Symptoms

Because sciatica results from a deeper underlying issue, it is considered less of a condition and more of a symptom characterized by:

  • Low back pain
  • Numbness or tingling down the leg
  • Weakness in these areas
  • Radiating pain
  • Worsening discomfort after sitting for long periods

How does acupuncture work for sciatica?

Acupuncture in Bend is a clear treatment option if you are experiencing symptoms of sciatica. Research has even shown this holistic therapy to treat pain just as well, if not better than traditional NSAIDs. This effect occurs because acupuncture sessions — and all treatments at Total Body Chiropractic, Massage & Acupuncture — directly address the problem rather than masking it.

Acupuncture involves placing tiny needles in various points to restore energy flow along pathways, known as meridians, throughout the body. When energy flows freely, your body can function and heal itself properly.

Regular acupuncture treatments can treat sciatica in these ways:

  • Relaxes tight muscles that may be compressing the nerve
  • Increases blood flow for quicker, more complete healing
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Decreases pressure on nerves
  • Stimulates the nervous system to release endorphins and other biochemical that ease the severity of pain
  • Promotes regeneration of the sciatic nerve

When it comes to acupuncture for sciatica, we use a distal technique. This means that needles may not necessarily be placed in the affected region. Instead, needles are placed some distance away from the problem area to stimulate other body areas to promote healing of the sciatic nerve and ease pain.

Acupuncture points for sciatica may be located in the wrists and forearms, lower calf and ankles, and the gallbladder and bladder meridians in the feet. The best Bend acupuncturist will create an individualized treatment plan to deliver the greatest results.

Acupuncture works even better in conjunction with the best chiropractic and massage in Bend. Acupuncture treats sciatic nerve pain, while chiropractic adjustments restore alignment and address the structural cause, and massage keeps muscles relaxed to reduce recurrence. Schedule your appointment with Total Body Chiropractic, Massage, & Acupuncture today to build the right holistic care plan for you.