The most common cause of sciatica is a herniated spinal disc. When this happens, the normal cushion between the vertebra of your spine ruptures. This causes the disc to push out into areas normally occupied by these nerves. The nerves are compressed and people then experience the symptoms of pain, weakness, and numbness. Other conditions, such as spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis, or piriformis syndrome can also cause cause sciatica symptoms by irritating the nerve
Sciatica is commonly used to describe pain traveling from your spinal cord through your hips, buttocks and down the back of each leg. Your sciatic nerve controls the muscles in your lower legs and provides feeling to your thighs, legs and feet. Sciatica is normally caused when a nerve root is compressed in your lower (lumbar) spine. Nerve fibers begin at the 4th and 5th lumbar vertebra (L4, L5) and the first few segments of the sacrum (S1, S2 or S3). Lumbar spine disorders can cause sciatica, often as a result of a herniated disk in your lower back. Doctors often call sciatica radiculopathy, a medical term used to describe pain, numbness, tingling, and weakness in the arms or legs caused by a nerve root problem, disk bulge or spinal disc herniation. Sciatica due to compression of a nerve root is the most common cause.
Sciatica is often described as mild to intense pain in the left or right leg and up into the butt region. The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the entire human body, about the diameter of a human finger. The sciatic nerves starts near the buttocks, rotates the thigh laterally, passes through side of the knee, branches into the hamstring or calf, and ends down by the feet. This may be why you can feel the pain in your butt all the way down to your feet. Aside from a pinched nerve from a disc, sciatica can be caused because of irritation of the nerve during pregnancy. So if you are pregnant, it may be due to the baby pushing bones out of place.
Main Sciatica Causes
The root cause of most Sciatica diagnosis is one of the following problems.
- Herniated Discs
- Spinal Stenosis
- Degenerative Disc Disease
- Isthmic Spondylolisthesis
- Piriformis Syndrome
- Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction.
All of which can be treated at home with a regular exercise and stretching routine. Each problem has a set of exercises that you should follow to reduce or eliminate the sciatica pain so make sure you understand which exercises to perform before going out and doing just any old exercise you can remember. You don’t want to make the problem worse.