Is massage or chiropractor better for sciatica?

It is estimated that 40 percent of U.S. adults will be affected by lower back pain caused by the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve can cause lower back pain from the buttocks radiating through the lower back, hips, and the back of the legs.

The sciatic nerve is one of the largest nerves in the body and runs from the buttocks to the top of the legs. Several issues can occur when the sciatic nerve is inflamed or damaged, with the use of chiropractic treatments and massage therapy popular care options. Chiropractic care can take several forms, with many people arriving at their chiropractor’s office when they suffer their first flare-up. The problems seen with prescription narcotic pain medications have led to millions of sciatica sufferers looking for new ways of treating their pain.

Chiropractors have the ability to ease the pain and lack of motion that are commonly associated with this lower back issue. The main benefit of completing chiropractic care to treat sciatica is a decrease in inflammation, which lowers the pain and discomfort commonly felt with this condition.

Among the ways chiropractic care can assist sciatic nerve pain is:

  • Decreased inflammation
  • Less Pain
  • A more active lifestyle

By seeking the assistance of a chiropractor, patients have the opportunity to obtain the assistance of a medical expert who has more than 4,000 hours of training. A chiropractic spinal adjustment is designed to restore the natural alignment and energy flow of the body. After the completion of a spinal adjustment, the lower levels of inflammation will help to improve the range of motion of a patient. By improving the range of motion, a chiropractor will assist their patient in returning to an active lifestyle. The sciatic nerve can flare up at any time, with some patients affected by flare-ups throughout their life.

The Benefits of Massage Therapy for Sciatica

Several forms of massage therapy can be used to relieve the symptoms of sciatica, including:

  • Swedish massage
  • Trigger point massage
  • Deep tissue massage
  • Hot stone massage

Massage therapy and chiropractic care often go hand-in-hand, with massage recommended as a complementary therapy to that of a chiropractor. The chiropractor will begin the treatment of sciatica with a spinal adjustment, with a massage therapist providing targeted therapy. The decision to see a massage therapy often comes from a referral from a chiropractor. If your sciatic nerve has flared up in the past, you will recognize the pain and want to seek the help of a massage therapist.

The most common treatment provided by a massage therapist is deep tissue massage, which targets the sciatic nerve. The slow, deep strokes will allow the patient to feel more relaxed as the inflammation around the sciatic nerve will be reduced. The hot stone massage is increasingly popular as a treatment for sciatica because it provides the benefits of heat and massage in combination. The main benefit of a hot stone massage is the ability to target the sciatic nerve with heat, which can relax the muscles around the lower back and top of the legs.

The use of hot stone massage is relatively new in the treatment of sciatica, with this treatment proving successful in reducing inflammation and relaxing tense muscles. There is little difference between a deep tissue massage and a Swedish massage. These two massage options both offer long, slow strokes as the main treatment for sciatica. The main difference between Swedish and deep tissue massages is the intensity of the movement from the massage therapist. If your pain levels from sciatica are high, you may wish to opt for a Swedish massage because the strokes are less powerful and more targeted. Trigger point massage therapy is an option that is difficult for some patients to complete.

The use of trigger point therapy targets the location of the sciatic nerve and uses targeted strokes to release pressure in the area. The targeting of the sciatic nerve makes this therapy one of the most painful, but it remains one of the most successful in releasing the pressure quickly. When you are ready to start chiropractic care or massage therapy to treat your sciatica, call 205-637-1363 to schedule an appointment.

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