Sciatica is a painful condition that involves compression of part of the sciatic nerve. Because this nerve starts in the lower back and branches down each leg, symptoms can vary in location and severity based on where the nerve is being pinched. For example, pain may occur in the hip or lower back and then extend down one leg. There may even be numbness or tingling in the foot of the affected leg. Where can you find relief from the pain and tingling?
Believe it or not, you may have to go all the way up to the top of the neck to find long-term relief. At least, that’s what one 45-year-old woman found after a car accident led to sciatica in both of her legs (which is far rarer than single-sided pain).
The Results of the Sciatica Case Study
A series of x-rays revealed that the patient was suffering from an upper cervical misalignment, likely the result of multiple car accidents she had experienced. Upper cervical care was provided by means of 47 adjustments spread out over 17 months. Not only did her sciatica resolve on both sides within six months but so did her other symptoms including fibromyalgia. She was able to go back to performing daily tasks, and sleep was also improved.
Why Upper Cervical Care Helps Sciatica Patients
While it may seem counterintuitive to adjust the neck in order to help the lower half of the body, the fact is that the position of the atlas (C1) affects the entire spine. That is because the atlas balances the 10 to 12-pound head. If it is out of alignment, the rest of the spine shifts to compensate. When the shifts in the lumbar spine compress the sciatic nerve, pain and other symptoms are the results.
Therefore, correcting the atlas misalignment has been the first step toward long-term recovery for some. To learn more, contact an upper cervical chiropractor in your area.