Lower back pain that begins in the lower back on either side, (right or left) and extends downward through the buttock and down the leg, (normally the back of the leg or thigh) is refereed to as sciatica. Sciatica is caused when the sciatic nerve gets compressed. This compression can be caused by a number of things.
Some of the more common things that place pressure on the sciatic nerve are:
1. Sitting on a hard object such as a wallet in your back pocket.
2. Discs and vertebrae out of alignment in the lower back causing the sciatic nerve to become pinched.
3. Herniated discs, this is when the inner core of a disc protrudes out of the outer core of the disc the lump then, causes pressure on the sciatic nerve.
4. Piriformis syndrome which is when the muscle (Piriformis Muscle) that attaches the lower part of the spine to the thigh bone becomes damaged and swells placing pressure on the sciatic nerve.
These are just the most common causes, mostly all causes of sciatica can be cured by simply doing exercises designed to stretch and strengthen the muscles around the spine in the lower back. The muscles around the lower part of the spine are supposed to keep the spinal column in alignment and if one muscle is stronger than another or is damaged it may cause the discs and vertebrae to come out of alignment pinching the sciatic nerve.
There are treatment plans that only require eight to ten minutes of stretching exercises a day to help keep those muscles in shape thus keeping the spinal column properly aligned. By performing these exercises on a daily basis, many people that have suffered from sciatica all their lives have been able to stay pain free for many years without the expense of doctors, chiropractors, or medications.
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