If you are suffering from sciatica during pregnancy, you are certainly not alone.
WHAT IS SCIATICA?
The sciatic nerve starts in the lower back, runs down the buttocks and branches down the back of the legs to the ankles and feet. It allows you to move muscles in your legs as well as supplying sensation. In most cases sciatica happens when the sciatic nerve gets compressed by bulging, slipped or ruptured discs, arthritis, or by a narrowing of the spinal cord (spinal stenosis).
CAUSES IT DURING PREGNANCY:
- Weight gain and fluid retention
- Loosening of ligaments
- Muscle weakening
- Inflammation as a result of the expanding uterus pressing down on the nerve
- Poor posture causing buttock and pelvic area to tighten up
- Baby’s head can rest directly on the nerve
SYMPTOMS CAN INCLUDE:
- Pain that starts in the back or buttocks and radiates all the way down the backs of your legs, or all the way to the foot.
- Sharp, shooting pain, burning, tingling or numbness or a dull ache
- Pain in lower back sitting, standing or walking that spreads into the pelvis
- Symptoms vary from person to person – everyone is different.
- Most common occur during the 3rd trimester
- Most cases subside within 6 weeks
- Typically experience pain in one side
- Constant or intermittent
- May persist after you have given birth for up to 6 months
SELF HELP TIPS!
- Rest – get off your feet
- Sleep on pain free side on firm mattress with back support and pillows between legs
- Perform pelvic tilts with Kegal Exercises
- Prenatal Massage
- Try to gain weight slowly
- Practising good posture
- Wearing a belt around your belly to support the bump
- Avoiding sitting or standing still for prolonged periods
- Wear flat, soft shoe to help prevent jarring of your spine when you walk
- Do not lift heavy objects
Attending a Chartered Physiotherapist who is experienced in pregnancy care is advisable as special considerations apply in the choice of treatment approach during pregnancy. Here at Archview Physiotherapy Clinic, our physiotherapists are trained in treating pregnancy related pain so if you are suffering from sciatica and would like to book an appointment or get further information please call 014913228 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We would be happy to answer any questions you may have!