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Sciatica and Acupuncture

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Acupuncture treats sciatica successfully and with excellent results!

Sciatica is not a diagnosis in itself but a combination of symptoms that refers to the pain caused by compression or irritation of one or more nerves exiting the lower spine that make up the sciatic nerve. This is an important distinction because there can be a variety of causes of the pain and the treatment will vary depending on the etiology. The sciatic nerve is located in the back of the leg and often the pain will start in the lower back and then travel down the buttock and leg along this nerve. The blockage of the sciatic nerve can lead to a sharp, stabbing pain or more of a deep, bothersome ache. Or you may also experience a numbness or weakness in the area.

This condition may be caused by excessive physical work or exercise, lack of exercise, lack of rest, an injury to the area or inflammation of the nerve. Many women experience sciatic pain during pregnancy and childbirth.

The Chinese Medicine explanation for sciatica

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, there are three possible causes of sciatic pain:

  1. Injury to the area;
  2. Invasion of wind, cold, or damp to an overtaxed condition;
  3. Liver and kidney deficiency

With an injury from a pulled muscle, accident or sitting too long in an uncomfortable position, the Blood and Qi cannot circulate properly and becomes stagnated. The nerve may be pinched or irritated and muscle spasms may occur which are extremely painful.

Cold and dampness, which can best be explained by the back area getting chilled, can come about by not dressing appropriately for the weather, swimming in cold water or exposure to the wind after sweating.

Another cause of sciatica is a deficiency of the Liver or Kidney. This can occur from excessive physical exertion.

TCM views all of these causes as being unique and believes that the correct treatment is important to relieving the pain and the healing process. Acupuncture treatment for sciatica is recommended by the World Health organization as an effective, non-invasive treatment.

Acupuncture has been healing sciatic pain for thousands of years using these concepts that allow the body to heal itself naturally and without the side effects of drugs or surgery. Even pain from osteoarthritis can be relieved within a few sessions. The number of treatments varies according to how you react to the treatments. Some acute injuries respond within one or a few treatments; most chronic sciatic issues respond within ten to twenty treatments. It has been my experience that acupuncture can be effective with ninety percent of cases with sciatic pain.

Acupuncture helped relieve her sciatic pain!

Betty is a fifty two year old who came to me because she had sciatic pain for the past eighteen months. She did not know the cause but had sharp, stabbing pain with exercise, driving and sleeping on her side. The rest of the time she had a deep, throbbing pain, even when sitting in her favorite chair. She had tried prescription pain relievers but did not like the side effects. When she came to see me she was taking over the counter ibuprophen with some relief but not much and she told me she was worried about the long-term side effects of taking it. She was also tired of the pain and the disruption it gave to her life.

Her pain was on her left buttocks and it traveled down her left leg to her calf and foot. Using the Balance Method Acupuncture she received fifty percent pain relief after her first treatment! I told her I needed to see her in two days and in the mean time watch her pain and tell me when it came back. She reported that the relief lasted for twenty four hours and when it came back it was less than before the treatment. With each successive treatment, she received more pain relief and longer lasting results. In all it took twelve treatments to resolve her sciatic issues, which have not returned ten months after treatment. She now sees me to keep her health in balance and reports her seasonal allergies have improved greatly.

Acupuncture treatment in Denver

At New Day Acupuncture, I treat cold sciatic issues with warming and moving treatment. If the sciatic pain is from injury, treatment would be to move the stuck Qi and Blood. The key is to bring the imbalance (the pain) back to balance (pain free). In addition to acupuncture and Chinese herbs, Tuina is a beneficial adjunct therapy in the treatment of sciatica and lower back pain.

Click here for information on a study regarding the effectiveness of sciatica and acupuncture

Discover how acupuncture can benefit you!

I offer a free 15 minute consultation for new patients who want to check out acupuncture and see if it's for them. This can be done by email, phone or in the office.

Call New Day Acupuncture to make an appointment today 720-838-7918

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