Physical Therapy for Sciatica at Monmouth & Ocean County, NJ Rehabilitation Facilities

physical therapy for sciatica by nj doctors

Sciatica is the term used to describe the symptoms related to compression, inflammation, or irritation of nerve roots in the lower back. These nerve roots converge to make up the sciatic nerve, which continues down the length of the leg to supply movement and sensation to the thigh, knee, calf, ankle, foot, and toes.

Symptoms of Sciatica can include:

Some patients with sciatica experience muscle weakness, numbness, or tingling. You may experience these feelings in the areas below.

  • Pain in the lower back
  • Buttocks
  • Leg
  • or foot

Common Causes of Sciatica

Sciatica may be caused by:

  • A herniated disc
  • Pregnancy
  • Spinal degeneration or misalignment
  • Spinal tumors (rarely)
  • or trauma.

When any of these puts pressure on the sciatic nerve, the result can be inflammation, numbness, and pain in the affected side. Though the sciatic nerve is found on both sides of your body, you will generally only feel the effects of sciatic pain in one side of your body. The pain that is felt may be sporadic or become constant, depending on the extent of the pressure to the sciatic nerve.

Physical therapy can be an extremely useful tool in combating the symptoms of sciatica. The goal of any physical therapy program is to restore the body to normal movement and flexibility while reducing pain. For patients with sciatica, physical therapy concentrates on passive treatments (such as massage) in order to prepare the body for therapeutic exercise. These treatments may be used by themselves or combined with other therapies as needed to give you better results during your therapeutic exercise. Utilizing a whole-body approach in the healing process helps to relieve the pain caused by addressing the underlying cause of the pain instead of the pain itself.

 

Start Your Physical Therapy Treatment for Pain Relief Today!

Physical therapy for sciatica may include any of the following practices:

Massage: Deep tissue massage works in the tissues and muscles of the lower back to release the tension that may be irritating the sciatic nerve and causing pain. While deep tissue massage may be a bit painful at first, it is because of how deep the muscles are that need to be worked. As your muscles and the areas affected start to relax, this discomfort should subside. Leaving you with less overall pain and a freer range of motion. Deep tissue massage goes beyond traditional soft tissue massage because of the depth in which it reaches and therefore is useful for reaching the areas affected by sciatica.

Cold/Heat Therapies: Cold therapy helps to reduce inflammation and pain, while heat increases circulation to the affected area to accelerate the healing process. These two extremes may be used alternately. Either of these treatments or both together, allows the inflamed area to relax and helps to relieve the pressure that is the cause of the sciatic pain. The increased circulation provided by the heat therapy will help to relax the area as well as promote self-healing in the area affected.

Low Level Laser Therapy: Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) works to ease the pain of sciatica because of its anti-inflammatory benefits. The infrared or near-infrared light used in laser therapy stimulates damaged cells and assists with healing and repair. This therapy also stimulates nerve function and increases circulation. This increased circulation aids in the reduction of the inflammation that causes the pressure on the sciatic nerve, allowing for a reduction in both stiffness and pain.

Electrotherapy: The nerves of the body are responsible for sending pain signals to the brain; electrotherapy disrupts these neurological messages before they are able to cause pain. This is accomplished by the delivery of electrical currents through electrodes attached to patches and placed on the area to be treated. The current blocks the body’s natural electric flow, thus blocking the pain signals caused by sciatica.

Exercise: Therapeutic exercise is designed to help build strength, increase flexibility, and restore the spine’s range of motion. It is extremely important for sciatica patients to attempt exercise only under the guidance of trained professionals who understand the needs and limitations related to lower back conditions. As the area of the spine is strengthened, the muscles will become less tense. This will not only relax the pressure placed on the sciatic nerve but also relieve the pain that results from the pressure.

Ultrasound: Pain, stiffness, cramping, and muscle spasms may be reduced with the use of ultrasound, which reaches deep into the muscle tissues with sound waves. These warm sound waves work much like heat therapy by increasing circulation and reducing inflammation that causes the pain of sciatica. This treatment also stimulates the body’s self-healing blood cells and allows them to repair the damage that caused this sciatic pain.

In addition to all of the above treatments, Monmouth Pain and Rehabilitation offers PowerPlate technology. The PowerPlate machine uses vibration to increase circulation in order to restore the damaged tissues and muscles of the body. As part of any physical therapy program, it can assist patients with restoring mobility and flexibility.

Sciatica Treatment at Monmouth Pain and Rehabilitation

Sciatica treatments at our Shrewsbury, Freehold, Wall, & Lacey offices are often combined with a program of chiropractic care, as sciatica may be the result of a misalignment of the lower spine. We also include acupuncture as another option for sciatica sufferers.

Because it is important to understand what is causing sciatica before beginning any type of treatment, we complete a full neurological and orthopedic examination, including the use of x-rays. The practitioners at Monmouth Pain and Rehabilitation are also certified to read and review the results of MRI imaging.

Please contact our office to learn more about sciatica treatment in Monmouth County & Ocean County, NJ, or visit one of our offices in Shrewsbury, Freehold, Wall, & Lacey. Call us today at 732-365-0301 for more information about our services.

 

Monmouth Pain & Rehabilitation Shrewsbury
174 Patterson Ave
Shrewsbury, NJ 07702
732-365-4160

Monmouth Pain & Rehabilitation Wall
1985 NJ-34 Bldg A
Wall, NJ 07719
 732-365-0101

Monmouth Pain & Rehabilitation Lacey
747 Lacey Rd
Forked River, NJ 08731
732-365-0440

Monmouth Pain & Rehabilitation Freehold
20 Thoreau Dr
Freehold, NJ 07728
732-365-0149