What causes sciatica?
Sciatica is caused by an inflammation of the sciatic nerve, the largest nerve in the body which itself is comprised of numerous smaller nerve endings. Sciatic pain generally extends from the lower back/lumbar area down through the leg and can be crippling and chronic for those who suffer from it.
Inflammation of the sciatic nerve happens when something pushes on the it — it could be something as simple as a muscle contraction or something more complex, like a herniated disc or even the spine itself. One of the most common causes of sciatic nerve pain is a “slipped disc.” This occurs when a small part of the spinal disc protrudes from the spinal column, against into the sciatic nerve.
How we treat sciatica with acupuncture, moxa and Tui Na.
Chinese medicine is used to treat numerous types of chronic pain, including arthritis, back pain and low back pain such as sciatica. Depending upon the individual and whether the pain is acute or chronic, possible therapies may range from Tui Na to cupping to electric stimulation and trigger point needling / acupuncture.
Tui Na, an ancient form of Chinese compression massage, uses different types of hand techniques that resemble western massage such as rolling, kneading, gliding and others. This form of massage is designed to help adjust the spine, enhance circulation and to adjust the body into balance.
Acupuncture and trigger point therapy are primary tools in reducing sciatica type pain. There are specific muscles that, when contracted, squeeze nerves and elicit a sharp pain response. Employing a needle to coax the muscle into a fasciculation, a trigger response, often provides great relief. Trigger point needling is always performed within a matrix of an acupuncture treatment chosen to enhance the healing process. Often moxa is burned either as a finish or an alternative to needling.
After a few sessions patients often see vast improvements in managing their sciatic pain