If you are someone who suffers from sciatica, the forms of relief you can find can seem few and far between. This pain starts most often in your lower back and radiates down to the lower extremities. It can be exhausting to live with and maintain a good quality of life. Even though a doctor may be able to prescribe you medications that mask the symptoms of sciatica, one of the best forms of treatment tends to be physical therapy. If you struggle every day because of sciatica pain, you should know that there are different forms of physical therapy that may help you find some relief.
Deep Tissue Massage
Even though most patients don't look at massage as something that is offered at a physical therapy clinic, massage is actually a big part of treatment for some conditions, even sciatica. Deep tissue massage can help with sciatica pain because the pressure on the sciatic nerves can be relieved by massaging other pressure points in the same area. If you go to physical therapy for sciatica, the therapist will probably try deep tissue massage as one of the first methods to relieve some of your pain.
Ultrasound therapy is one of the many alternative treatment methods that is available, thanks to modern technology. During an ultrasound, waves of radioactive energy are sent deep into the tissues of your body. These waves help produce heat and the heat can help to improve your blood circulation. The ultrasound therapy will likely be used right around your sciatic nerve in your mid and lower back, but it may also be used on your legs if you have a lot of pain in this area. As the tissues heat up, it can relieve the spasms of pain you are feeling.
If you have ever used an ice pack at home, you have experienced the relief that can come with cold therapy. Lowering the temperature of the tissues around your sciatic nerve can help to relieve inflammation. Inflammation in the area can contribute to pressure on the sciatic nerve by the inflamed surrounding tissues. Your therapist at the Physical Therapy Institute or other clinic may use ice packs held in the area for long periods of time or even give you the supplies and instructions to do this therapy on your own when you go home. In some cases, alternating between hot and cold therapy can offer you an even greater level of relief.