Sciatica is a term used for leg pain, numbness and/or weakness in one or both legs and the lower back. Sciatica is not a medical diagnosis in itself and is a symptom which appears due to an underlying condition.
The term sciatica originates from the sciatic nerve, which runs from the lower back through the thigh. Any lower back condition such as herniated disc, spinal stenosis etc. can cause compression and hence pain in one or both legs and lower back region. The pain caused due to sciatica can range from mild to debilitating, and can greatly affect the day to day life of the patient. Here are some simple sciatica stretches that you can do in the comfort of your home and ease that numbing pain in your leg.
This stretch will ease the pain caused by a herniated disc, if you are not aware that you have this condition and can still feel relief from pain after performing this stretch, it is probable that you have a herniated disc.
To perform this stretch, lie down on your stomach with your elbows aligned directly under your shoulders. Lift your chest up and arch your back such that you feel the stretch throughout your spine. Hold this position for 30 seconds and do 2 repetitions of this stretch. Care should be taken not to push yourself beyond your comfort level while doing these stretches.
Full Back Stretch
This is one of the best sciatica pain relief stretches. This stretch helps reduce compression and create room for the sciatica nerve. Lie on your back with your knees bent. Now lift your knees and wrap both your arms around the knees. Pull your knees to your chest slowly making sure your back rounds with the movement. Hold this pose for 30 seconds and then let go.
Stretch for Hip Muscles
The second stretch can help loosen your hip muscles and provide a relief from sciatica pain. For this stretch, you need to lie down flat on your back. Then lift your right knee and hold your knee, with the palms of your hands behind your knee. Gently pull your knee across your body towards your left shoulder and hold for 30 seconds.
Posterior Pelvic Tilt
This stretch works on the lower back muscles to reduce compression and pain. To perform this stretch you need to lie on your back with your knees bent. Then place your hands on your head and pull your abdominal muscles in until your lower back is flat and you feel a stretch in the lower back. This movement will stretch your lower back muscles and provide relief for the pinched sciatica nerve.
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