If you have ever suffered from low back pain and / or sciatica, then you know it can be very frustrating. The pain can be quite intense and you can often be left with the feeling that things can't go on this way.
It's really troubling. And what do you do about it? If you go the medical route, you are looking at drugs and / or surgery. If you go the alternative route you are looking at physical therapy or chiropractic or acupuncture - or some other therapy.
All of this is complicated by the reality that no one size fits all. Some things work for some people and some other things work for others. You are left trying to figure things out.
Since even the experts don't agree on what back pain is, it gets very complicated. How can we, the non-experts, hope to get to the bottom of things? Yet, when you are in pain, you might feel that you have no alternative but to figure things out. Mainly because you don't want to stay in pain.
If you hide the pain with medication, you are left worrying that you might be hurting yourself further and are not able to realize it because some of the pain is hidden. All of this adds up to a very confusing picture. Yet, when you are in pain, you are compelled to figure it out. The alternative is to just take the meds and hope for the best. It's up to the individual to decide what he wants.
Since my first bought with sciatica occurred in early July of 2017, I have been in this type of situation. It is now late September 2017.
I have purchased many courses and books on back pain. I believe I have spent over $2000 on chiropractic care - 3 chiropractors and one nurse practitioner.
Yet, I still have a problem. I have improved and things seem better, but I am still in pain.
Some things I have come to understand or believe about Sciatica.
Some people suffer for a few months and some for years.
The experts don't agree.
I believe that part of the problem is that people re-injure themselves daily. This causes the pain to remain because it is hard to heal when you constantly re-injure yourself. How does this happen? Through sleeping and or bad posture positions.
It is important to find a sleeping position that does not cause you to wake up with more pain than you went to bed with. Some people believe that more pain in the morning is normal. I'm starting to believe that is NOT necessarily how it should be.
Being unable to sleep well is bad for your health. I currently don't sleep more than 1-2 hours at a time.
I believe that drugs are a terrible solution. I'm talking about painkillers, anti-inflammatories and muscle relaxers. However, if you are in so much pain that you have no choice, I can understand that. I do not place blame. I only feel that we should try our best to avoid these if at all possible. But if you have no choice, it is understandable. Check the list of side effects so that you know what to be on the lookout for.
Maybe proteolytic enzymes such as those found in pineapple, papaya, kiwi and sauerkraut can be helpful with the inflammation and pain. I do not know, I only just started experimenting with these.
I have been using 100% cacao, almonds, ginger and tumeric.
After trying and reading about many back remedies, I'm convinced that McKenzie has the best answers and possible solution to low back pain and sciatica. His book is Treat Your Own Back. I also have a McKenzie night roll, which has proven to NOT be helpful so far.
Unfortunately, I only found out about the McKenzie method a few weeks ago. I wish I had been using it since the beginning. It has helped and I believe, as stated previously, that it provides the most potential out of everything I have read about or tried so far.
If you are not up for reading the book and trying it for yourself, you can find certified McKenzie practitioners to help you. They are usually physical therapists, chiropractors or doctors who have the training and certification from the McKenzie institute. Be careful, there are uncertified people who may not fully utilize McKenzie or who mix it with other techniques. They also may not fully understand how to use the method properly. Go for a certified practitioner if you seek someone to help you with the McKenzie method.
I also have the original McKenzie lumbar support roll. Sometimes it is helpful, other times it seems to pressure the sensitive parts of my low back. I understand the need to keep the proper, or create the proper lordosis, so I continue to use it with varying results. Sometimes I don't use it for the reason that it can hurt, similar to the night roll.
That is all on this topic for now. If you have something to add, use the comment section below. Always be under the care and guidance of your favored health care practitioner, even if you choose to self treat - in order to make sure you are protecting your health and not causing additional issues.
Here is a video I made on the McKenzie book: