How Athletes Can Deal with Sciatica

athlete, lower back pain and knee pain

Keeping your body in tip-top shape and health should be a priority of yours. As an athlete or someone who takes fitness exceptionally seriously, perhaps you’ve experienced lower back pain and knee pain from working out or playing.

Some pain after working out is common for individuals who like to exercise. As an athlete, you probably blurted out the saying “no pain, no gain” at one point. You train yourself daily to become stronger, faster, and better at your sport. 

However, you should know that injuring yourself is still a possibility. Accidents can happen in sports that can result in unbearable pain. Sciatica is one usual outcome of sporting injuries involving the lower back.

Lower back pain and knee pain are usually the telling symptoms of sciatica, which can immensely affect your performance in sports. People with this condition may experience varying severity of its symptoms.

Aside from lower back pain and knee pain, the other signs of sciatica may include:

  • Radiating pain from the buttocks and down to one of the legs
  • Muscle weakness in the affected leg
  • Numbness or tingling sensation along the affected area
  • Pain that becomes sharper when standing or walking

Let’s talk about sciatica and share ways to manage the pain it causes. If you want to learn how you can reduce the feeling of pain in your muscles and bones, we hope that this article can help you out.

 

Why Sciatica Happens

Sciatica is a painful condition. To fully understand how this condition comes to be, we’ll briefly talk about the nerve where sciatica roots from.

Sciatica, as the name hints, is a condition that stems from damaging the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve begins at the lower back and stretches down to the buttocks and the back of each leg. This nerve provides the area it covers with feeling and function.

Sciatica patients experience the condition differently, depending on the location of the damage or issue in the sciatic nerve. For example, some patients may experience burning pain on one leg while others on both.

Sciatica pain can be an outcome of various reasons, such as injury to the spine, pregnancy, disc herniation, and spinal disc degeneration. But did you know that sitting on your wallet can also lead to sciatica?

 

5 Ways Athletes Can Alleviate Sciatica 

#1. Exercise

When you experience pain anywhere in your body, the first thing you should do is give the area some time to rest. However, prolonged resting can make the pain worse and further weaken the affected region. 

If you have sciatica, you must not give in to a sedentary lifestyle. Instead, actively involve yourself in mild workouts to prevent your muscles from becoming stiff and weak.  Yoga, for example, is a good means to get relief from sciatica.

#2. Correct Footwear

Did you know that the shoes you wear in sports or when exercising can reduce sciatic pain? When gearing up for battle, choosing the right equipment is vital. This rule also applies in sports. 

Check your footwear. Does it fit you well? Does it provide ample cushion to your feet? Does it support the natural curve of your feet? Is it too light or too heavy?

athlete, lower back pain and knee pain

#3. Healthy Lifestyle

Athletes are usually the peak image of health. However, you cannot be too complacent about how you’re taking care of your body. Make sure that you sleep enough hours at night. Eat foods that are healthy and can reduce inflammation. Refrain from smoking or drinking alcohol as these can increase the rate of degeneration in your spine.

#4. Medication

Meds and pills are the typical go-to solutions for any pain. Painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs can help you in a pinch and provide fast relief from sciatica

#5. Upper Cervical Care

Did you know that your lower back pain and knee pain can come from an issue in your upper neck? Although positively surprising, that can be the case for your sciatica. We’re happy to share why.

If you recall, connected bones and ligaments make up the spine. Aside from supporting our backs, the spine houses the spinal cord and the sciatic nerve roots.

Suppose you injure your neck from playing sports, resulting in an upper cervical misalignment. It can have a drastic domino effect on the other spine structures as they adjust and compensate for the misalignment. As a result, sciatic nerve irritation happens. 

Fortunately for you and anyone dealing with sciatica, upper cervical chiropractic care can provide relief.

 

Return to Sports with The Help of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care 

Managing sciatica with medication and rest can only do so much. If you remember getting in an accident or hurting your neck before experiencing lower back pain and knee pain, you’ll need the help of an upper cervical chiropractor.

You might not be familiar with upper cervical chiropractic care, but this practice can save you from further pain and discomfort. 

Upper cervical chiropractic care deals with misalignments in the two uppermost bones in the neck. Compared to the other bones in the spine, these two bones are more mobile and possibly the most important. You might ask, “Why?”

Besides supporting our head, they also protect the brainstem. And because of their mobility, these two bones are highly prone to misaligning. Upper cervical chiropractors have the knowledge and means to correct these misalignments.

If you want to learn more about this gentle and natural way of alleviating sciatica symptoms, set a consultation with an upper cervical chiropractor near you today!

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