Sciatica

Is sciatica taking its toll on your life?

Are you experiencing pain radiating down your leg? If so, you are probably suffering from sciatica. As many as 40 percent of people suffer from this throughout their life, yet it is not well understood by most people.

There are two main causes of sciatica: compression of one of the nerve roots that make up the sciatic nerve or compression of the sciatic nerve by the piriformis muscle.

Compression of the nerve roots can be due to either disc degeneration, disc herniation, or a structural shift of one or more of the vertebrae in your spine.

The other cause could be to do tightening or contracture of the piriformis muscle creating a compression effect on the descending sciatica nerve. If stretching or massage of the piriformis muscle relieves the condition, the condition is most likely muscular; however, if stretching or massage do not help the condition or only provide temporary relief, there is a good chance the problem is due to either disc degeneration, disc herniation, or a structural shift in your spine.

We would be happy to help you to determine where the root cause of the problem is coming from. If it is muscular, we work with some great physical therapists and massage therapists and if it is due to a structural shift, we would be able to create a customized program to help get to the root cause of the issue.

Reach out to us for a complimentary consultation, and we can let you know if you would be a good candidate for structural chiropractic care or not.

One fine morning, after my daily routine, I sat on the floor to offer my prayers as usual. After praying, when I got up from the floor and after a couple of steps, I felt a very sharp pain in my left hip region. I tried shifting my weight to my right side in order to make myself feel better but unfortunately, even the right side felt a similar pain! I then realized that I could not stand or bear my weight and felt instantly alarmed. This was something very serious! I called someone for help to put a mat on the floor so I could lay down but he laid it 3 to 4 feet away from where I was!

So because I could not walk at all due to the intense pain, I had to roll on the floor to get onto the mat. I lay there for many hours before my dad finally called our doctor who gave me an injection and told me that if I still could not sit up after a while, to please call for an ambulance to bring me to a neurospecialist. Sure enough, the injection did not work, so we called an ambulance that took me to a hospital far away from my home.

In the hospital, I screamed in pain when they shifted me from my stretcher to do an MRI and whenever they shifted me from bed to bed. From my MRI reports, the doctor found that I had a prolapsed disc in 3 places in my spine: L3, L4 and LS. The doctor then told my wife that if I didn’t get any better, that I had to go for surgery. At this point, all I could do was pray, as neither surgery nor frequent injections were appealing to me. I was scared about what would become of me.

That evening, I was given heat therapy, electromagnetic stimulus, some pain killing injections as well as a dose of sleep medicine. Every day, I would undergo 2 sessions of heat therapy and electromagnetic treatment plus 6-8 hours of manual traction. After a week, I was able to sit up in bed and 2 days later, I was able to walk with the help of a huge belt around my hips that would hold up my upper body. I felt as if I was learning to walk again. I had to wear this belt whenever I sit, walk or move. The doctor advised me not to sit on the floor, bend down to pick up things or lift anything.

I was affected financially, physically and psychologically. Financially, I spent money on visiting doctors, on medication and accessories (hip belt and manual traction kit), and on cab fare to and from work for 6 months as I could not stand for a long time. Physically, I was weak and had to do my work very slowly.

In the morning, I was not able to do my meditations and yoga, particularly “Surya namaskar” (Sun salutations). I could not stand for more than 15 minutes hence, was not able to travel on the MRT, which sways from side to side and may make my back condition worse. I was therefore restricted to using buses or cabs, where I could sit down.

Psychologically, I felt hopeless and helpless, wondering when the pain would come back and should I get bed-ridden, how would I be able to take care of myself and my family? Whenever I had pain, I would go to my regular doctor to get medication for the pain as well as medical leave to rest.

Once rested up, my pain would go away but it would recur when I started doing my usual work. I realized that going to the regular doctor each and every time was not going to solve my problem. In fact, I wondered if I could ever get better. I was looking for the right solution but it was a big question: Where and how?

My prayer was answered when my colleague referred me to Chiropractic First. I came to the Thomson Plaza branch because it was nearest to my home. During my first consultation, Dr. Matthew asked me to remove my hip belt. He went through my x-rays and old MRI scans and discovered that I had neck and mid back issues that I did not even bring up during consultation. He said he will fix those too. I was glad that Dr. Matt had such a good grip of things.

During my first adjustment, I heard my hip and lower back bones make a “cracking noise”. After 3 to 4 sessions of adjustments, I was able to walk freely and travel on buses and MRT, standing. Upon experiencing my body’s improvement, I realized that a miracle had happened and was utterly grateful to Dr. Matthew for making me better.

Now, I am able to do exercises that were illustrated in the DVD given to me by the clinic. I can do meditation in the mornings and evenings for at least an hour. Travelling is now an enjoyment. I can go shopping with my family for hours. Before, I could not even stand 15 minutes.

I feel thankful to God for leading me to Dr. Matthew Westheimer. Dr. Matt has enabled me to understand and experience the full potential of my body’s innate intelligence. The office is wonderful and the staff are helpful and kind. They care for every patient who comes here. They go the extra mile to give patients a call and remind them about their next session. I like the video being played the whole day for patients to remind them about good posture.

I would recommend chiropractic care to people like myself so that they can be saved from the operating table, metal plates and screws. People with chronic back and neck issues should go for at least a first time consultation and examination to discover the root cause of their problems.

One thing I want to say from the abyss of my heart: Celebrate every moment of this life with the amazing intelligence of your self-healing body. I will certainly take good care of my body that will help me sail through the ocean of life. 🙂 🙂 🙂

– Vanchin L.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is sciatica?

Sciatica is a term for a condition involving the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve is the longest nerve in the body. It is comprised of the nerve roots from L4-S3 and join to form one big nerve that travels all the way down the leg and into the feet. If that nerve is affected, it can lead to pain, numbness, or tingling all along the entire leg or even just in localized areas along the distribution.

What causes sciatica?

Sciatica is usually caused from compression of one of the spinal nerve roots from either degeneration, disc herniations, or structural shifts of the vertebrae. It can also be due to compression by the piriformis muscle. The exact cause can only be determined by a thorough structural evaluation.

Is sciatica something I am just going to have to live with?

Most of the time – no. We have helped hundreds of patients resolve their sciatica without any drugs or surgery. Structural correction is a powerful tool to be able to give people their lives back.

How will I know if the problem is coming from the spine or somewhere else?

Our thorough examination will help you determine the cause of your problem. We will perform a detailed case history as well as a detailed examination where we will evaluate every level of the nerve along the kinetic chain. We start with the spine and then evaluate each joint and pathway of the nerve to determine if the obstruction is coming from the spine or any other imbalances along the leg. There is no guesswork with our process. We utilize a combination of a thorough physical exam and state of the art technology like digital x-ray to determine exactly what the cause of your problem is.

Schedule a complimentary consultation

We will always start with a complimentary consultation so that we can learn about your condition and so you can learn about our unique style of Structural Correction and how it can have a significant impact on your life and overall health.

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