Have you ever been on the receiving end of chronic pain of any kind or origin? The type of pain that makes you envy every single person who is not in your situation? And in addition to this, every form of medication you try seems to fail miserably? Well, Sciatica can be all of that and more. The changing trend of lifestyle has seen a recent spike in the diagnosis of this malady. To some extent, the victims of this disease have been failed by modern medicine. Well, have you tried TCM for Sciatica?
This article offers a new approach and holistic lifestyle changes to treat Sciatica and prevent the occurrence of the same. But first, before we get to the different ways to treat Sciatica using TCM for Sciatica, let’s understand this disease and how it affects the body.
What is Sciatica?
Also known as lumbar radiculopathy, Sciatica refers to leg pains emanating from the lower back and continues down both legs. The symptoms manifest themselves as a tingling sensation radiating from the lower back, a burning sensation, numbness, weakness anywhere along the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve, being the longest nerve in the body, runs from the nerve roots located in the lumbar spinal cord in the back through the hips and down the legs. Sciatica may cause buttock pain, hip pain, lumbar pain or leg pains.
The irritation of the sciatic nerve results from pain in the lower extremity of the back commonly known as the lumbar area, and goes down the back of the thigh and below the knee. If necessary steps are not taken to treat Sciatica, the pain can be so excruciating and debilitating to the point where simple movements degenerate to drudging and taxing actions. The pain typically radiates along the path of the sciatic nerve.
Lumbar disk herniation directly exerting pressure on the nerve remains the primary cause of Sciatica. The pressure from the herniated disk causes the irritation inflammation of the sciatic nerve hence the symptoms. This results in radiculopathy which is an abnormal intervertebral disc.
Tumors may also cause sciatica. Other causes include irritation to the sciatic nerve during pregnancy, internal bleeding, infections in the lumbar spine and contiguous areas, spondylolisthesis, spinal stenosis, osteophyte, and cauda equina syndrome.
Diagnosis of Sciatica
There are many ways to treat Sciatica, but first, we must focus on its diagnosis. This sickness is popularly diagnosed by a physical examination or an examination of a family history of the disease. Further tests like MRI scans, CT scans, and X-rays are used to determine the exact cause and extent of the damage before deciding on the most effective way to treat Sciatica.
Risk factors of Sciatica include:
- Age, especially among the old,
- Occupation (especially those that exert extra pressure on the lower back or those that require twisting of the back)
- Diabetes and prolonged sitting.
TCM for Sciatica
Now that we have familiarised ourselves with Sciatica, the next thing is distinguishing how to treat Sciatica using TCM. Western medicine tries to treat Sciatica through pain pills and particular medications, surgery, physiotherapy to name a few. Though successful to some extent, TCM for Sciatica has proven to be much more effective.
TCM for Sciatica places a significant distinction on sciatic pain vis-a-vis the causes. These are sciatic pains caused by:
- Deficiency of blood, Qi and Yin & Yang in the liver and the kidney mainly catalyzed by fatigue and poor resting with the pain gets worse at night.
- Muscular and structural tension. The symptoms of the sciatic pain worsen when the patient is sitting still.
- Wind-Cold-Damp Bi obstruction – sciatic pains caused and exacerbated by the poor diet of the patient and cold or damp weather. It mostly affects the meridians on the lower limbs. It’s wise to treat Sciatica of this sort as Arthritis is a significant risk factor.
Qi, Yin, and Yang
TCM for Sciatica offers a peculiar treatment to this malady. To treat Sciatica, one must unblock Qi and most importantly blood stagnation, nourishing the Yin while concurrently toning the Yang. I know it sounds like a lot, but it really isn’t. It’s easily accomplished by mixing acupuncture and TCM for Sciatica which is specifically designed to surgically separate one from sciatic pains and calm the inner disharmony.
Chinese Massage to Treat Sciatica
Chinese massage, also known as Tui Na is a popular form of massage therapy to treat Sciatica. One TCM for Sciatica massage session lasts anywhere from 30 minutes to hours depending on the patient’s proclivities and the severity of the Sciatica.
Moxibustion and Acupuncture
Moxibustion and acupuncture are the dynamic duo when it comes to TCM for Sciatica specifically the treatment of the Wind-Cold-Damp Bi obstruction Sciatica. The damp or even cold qi-energy may seep into the acupuncture meridians resulting in substantial pain that straddles between the lower back and the heel. Anything between the heel and the lower back is highly impressionable to this pain. Moxibustion is the application of heat concentrated on the acupoints to treat Sciatica. The mugwort herb is rolled up into a cigar shape, and the smoldering part is directly placed on the painful part. Du Huo Ji Sheng Tang, a TCM for Sciatica, is a warm and dry herbal mixture that also alleviates this variation of Sciatica.
Acupuncture is also a perfect way to treat Sciatica. It involves the use of fine sterilized needles are placed along the pathway of the pain to displace the qi-energy. For some cases, a variation of acupuncture which is ear acupuncture is also used to treat Sciatica.
Qi Gong Exercises
Qi Gong (chi kung) exercise is another viable option to treat Sciatica. These exercises involve the re-routing of the body’s qi-energy to places where it stagnates or is deficient. This is a very efficient TCM for Sciatica since it has additional health benefits of exercising.
TCM for Sciatica has proved to be an affordable and therapeutic alternative to treat Sciatica. It relies on natural remedies which have negligible side effects to the patient. TCM for Sciatica perfectly corroborates Voltaire’s axiom, ‘The art of medicine consists of amusing the patient while nature cures the disease.’