I’ve been struggling with back pain for over 5 years and sciatica for about a year and a half, some days are worse than others but I recently tripped while carrying a 20L jug of ingredients up the stairs at work which aggravated it worse than it’s been in a long time. It’s now causing me stiffness and pain even in the morning when I first get out of bed which is something I’d never had a problem with before, it was always sore at the end of the day but started out feeling alright in the mornings until this most recent incident.
Over the last 5 years or so I’ve discovered a few things that do give me some low back and hip pain relief, but so far I haven’t discovered any lasting remedy. Although I still suffer with back pain daily, I’d like to share some of the best sciatic pain relief tips that I’ve come up with this far into my quest to cure back pain.
Remember that these tips are only what seem to help with my specific condition, they may or may not help you with your back pain. I’m sure some of this information will be relevant to your condition, but some of it won’t be and could actually cause more damage depending on what is causing your pain.
If you aren’t sure what’s right for you, consult your physio-therapist, chiropractor, and other health care providers before beginning to make anything you read here a regular part of your pain relief program or exercise regime.
Proteolytic Systemic Enzymes (Heal-n-Soothe)
Since I started this article talking about enzymes, I figure I might as well get them out of the way early. Heal-n-Soothe can help you reduce pain naturally. It’s an all natural formula designed to fight pain related to inflammation. It’s an all natural anti-inflammatory and not only does it relieve pain but it also works as an anti-viral, anti-bacterial immune system booster.
Heal-n-Soothe has helped hundreds of people ditch their prescription pain-killers and anti-inflammatory drugs (nsaids). This is true for me too. I find Heal-n-Soothe works just as good as any of the over-the-counter pain relievers like Tylenol, Ibuprofen, Advil, or Aspirin. I’m still on my first bottle, but I’ve found it works best when you take the enzymes at night just before bed, as long as you’ve had an empty stomach for at least an hour or two. (you shouldn’t eat right before bed anyway) You also have to play with the dose, each person needs a different amount of Heal-n-Soothe for it to be effective. I am taking 8-12 capsules per day which is almost 3 times the recommended dosage on the bottle. This is safe, of course, because everything in Heal-n-Soothe is all natural and non-toxic with no reported side effects. I usually take 5 capsules right before bed, and if I need to, I take 3-5 in the morning when I get up if I feel stiff or sore.
For more information on how proteolytic systemic enzymes work to reduce pain and inflammation you can click the link below to read an article about it on my new site, natural-sciatic-relief.com.
Click this link: Systemic Enzymes
The article above is actually an email I was sent by my friend Steve Hefferon from the Healthy Back Institute. When he saw that I was taking Heal-n-Soothe he thought I might like to know more about it so he sent me that email. When he found out I was building a website about back pain he told me that I could post it there if I wanted, so I did.
The Healthy Back Institute currently has a promotion going on where you can get a one month supply of Heal-n-Soothe for free if you pay the shipping. This is the same promotion that lured me into trying it, and I’m glad I signed up. Make sure you request your bottle before August 31st because they are taking down the free trial promotion in September.
Spinal Decompression with the Nubax Trio or an Inversion Table
The second most effective way to get fast sciatic relief for me is to use the Nubax Trio for spinal decompression (also known as ‘traction’). Decompression takes the pressure off of the sciatic nerve which is what causes me most of my pain. I’ve read some bad reviews online, especially on the nubax discussion threads on facebook, but I can honestly say that the Nubax Trio helps for my particular condition. Once again, it’s not a magic ‘cure all’ device, but I’m certainly glad that I dished out the $300 to get one.
Sometimes if I use the Nubax too frequently or for too long, or if I try to ‘force’ it and more traction than I should I will find it slightly painful afterwards. I’ve learned that less is more when dealing with back pain, so if you get yourself a Nubax Trio make sure you don’t over-do it.
I’ve never actually used an inversion table, but I think it would be a better choice than the Nubax. I got a Nubax Trio instead of an inversion table due to space restrictions and would have went with a full out inversion table if I had the space when I decided to try decompression, especially since they are the same price.
For more information on the Nubax Trio click here.
For more information on Inversion Therapy click here.
Read the Inversion Therapy FAQ.
Muscle Balance Therapy (Lose The Back Pain)
Most back pain starts with an injury or ‘incident’ of some kind, but when it doesn’t go away after a few days it is usually because of pre-existing muscle imbalances or trigger points. If it’s a muscle imbalance causing the problem the imbalance pulls your hips out of alignment and keeps them there until the muscle imbalances are addressed with the correct set of stretches and exercises. Without addressing the underlying muscle imbalances you will never get complete and lasting lower back pain and sciatic relief (if your pain is caused by muscle imbalances!).
The Muscle Balance Therapy program called Lose The Back Pain that is offered by the Healthy Back Institute is a complete assessment and treatment program for muscle imbalances. I can attest to the accuracy of the assessment portion of the program because after going through the assessments I was told that I have a right side high hip and a backwards tilted pelvis. I recently switched to a new chiropractor with a very good reputation and went in for an assessment with him. After going through about 150 little tests in his office he told me that my left side hip is pretty much in proper alignment but my right side is twisting up and back. In other words he told me that I have a right side high hip with a backwards tilt. This abnormal torquing of my hips and lower back is probably what’s causing my sciatic pain.
The corrective exercises and stretches provided in the Lose The Back Pain system are unique to you and your condition which is why so many people get good results using this program. I’m still trying, but it definitely seems to be helping more than any other stretches or exercises that have ever been given by doctors, physio-therapists, or chiropractors.
Click here for one of the most effective stretches included in the Lose The Back Pain system. It’s the single most effective stretch for immediate relief of sciatic nerve pain for me. Another important stretch is the basic seated hamstring stretch. This is where you sit on the ground with one leg out and gently reach for your toes, this stretch is often neglected. There are about 18 other targeted stretches and exercises that the Lose The Back Pain system advised me to do and to do them all it takes about 45 minutes out of my day.
Click here to get a free 30 day trial of the Lose The Back Pain system.
I just started seeing a highly recommended massage therapist and after only one session with her I know that she will be able to help me fix my back and finally get lasting relief. When I saw her for the first time she basically confirmed everything that the Lose The Back Pain system told me. She determined that the same muscles were tight that the Lose The Back Pain system said would be tight and needed to be stretched. After the first 90 minute session I had with my massage therapist I felt much better than I did when I went in. I felt much looser and I had a feeling of hope that getting rid of my sciatic pain is within reach.
It’s important to find a skilled and knowledgeable massage therapist, someone who knows about myofascial trigger points. Years ago when I had my first back injury I saw a crappy chiropractor and a crappy massage therapist who shared an office and waiting room. The massage therapist just did a general massage and didn’t really ask me any questions or do any sort of assessment. She just did a basic ‘feel good’ massage and hoped it would be enough for me. I don’t think she had even spoken to the chiropractor across the hall from her about my condition! Needless to say, I didn’t get any relief from her (or the chiropractor across the hall). Make sure you find a reputable massage therapist and be sure to tell them everything you know about your specific condition and the muscle imbalances that are causing you pain so that they can work with you to correct your problem.
A lot of problems are mimicked and worsened by persistent muscle pain, also called ‘trigger points’. This is turning out to be one of the big issues with my back, it’s actually muscle pain not really ‘back pain’.
Up until recently I was fairly ‘anti-chiropractic’ because of the bad experience I had with a crappy chiropractor when I had my first back injury over 5 years ago. While doing all this research on back pain and sciatica over the last few months I’ve read a lot of good things about chiropractors so I decided to seek out a new chiropractor with a solid history of helping people with sciatic and lower back pain. I found one through a recommendation and went in for an assessment. The assessment was kind of pricey ($120) but the doctor spent nearly an hour and a half with me in his office doing a series of physical tests to determine an appropriate treatment. The other chiropractor didn’t do any of that with me and simply cracked my back and had me out of his office with my next scheduled appointment in my hand in less than 20 minutes.
Finding a reputable chiropractor is even more important than finding a reputable massage therapist. A chiropractor is physically, and sometimes forcefully, manipulating your spine and putting it into proper alignment. You don’t want just anyone manipulating your spine, it’s what protects your spinal cord and also what bears the weight of nearly everything you do during the course of a day. That’s why it’s extremely important that you form a strong relationship with your chiropractor and make sure that not only do you give them as much information as possible but they should also be explaining everything they are doing to you and why. A visit to the chiropractor should not be a quick-fix back cracking and then you’re out the door, your chiropractor should be spending time with you, explaining things, and giving you informed advice on how to correct your muscle imbalances so that you can keep your spine and hips in proper alignment.
My new chiropractor confirmed what the Lose The Back Pain system told me, I have an up and backward twisting of my hips on the right side, resulting in a right side high hip and a backwards tilted pelvis. The Lose The Back pain system helped me identify several corrective exercises and the chiropractor said that for now they looked good and to keep doing them but it’s likely that by my next visit (my second visit with him) he will likely have some which he will want to take off of my list and a few to add to it. So far this new chiropractor seems to be the most knowledgeable of all of those on my sciatic pain relief team. I truly hope he can help me eliminate my pain for good.
A few months back I had two acupuncture sessions with a well respected acupuncturist near by. I did enjoy the treatment and thought the sensation of electrical pulse needles being stuck in my body was kind of cool, but the treatment didn’t seem to offer any real lasting relief.
Leaving the clinic I did feel good, I actually felt better than I did when leaving the chiropractor that I was seeing with my first injury. The feeling gave temporary relief that lasted a few days and then it went back to about normal after that. I do recommend that anyone interested in acupuncture goes and gives it a try. There’s certainly something to it and that’s why I’m writing about it here in this post.
Acupuncture is great for dealing with pain in the present moment, but I don’t think that acupuncture alone is the way to cure any chronic back pain problem or sciatica. I think that using an acupuncturist while doing the rest of the above steps could be useful, but I wouldn’t rely on acupuncture treatments alone to solve your back pain problems or give you lasting sciatic relief.
For now that’s all of the sciatic relief tips that I have to share with you. If I find new treatments that I deem worthy I will add them to this page or maybe write a new post about it, but for now these are all of the most effective back pain and sciatica treatments that I am aware of.
I hope this article helps you find lasting relief for your back pain or sciatic nerve pain.