Dr. Edward J. Hartey
600 Pennsylvania Ave.
Matamoras, Pa 18336
Certified Chiropractic Sports Physicians
Call Us Today: 570.491.BACK
Volume 21 No.6
Sciatica: Why Your Leg is on Fire!
Sciatica is the inflammation of the largest and longest nerves in the body. The sciatic nerves are created by the gathering of nerves that extend from the spinal cord and down through the pelvic bones, like individual streams that come together to form two mighty rivers. These mighty rivers of nerves run down each leg and branch out to feed information to run every function in the legs and feet.
Sciatica is like having the feeder streams, mighty rivers, and their branches set on fire. Other symptoms associated with sciatica are thigh pain in the front, side or back; pins and needles; numbness; tenderness; and crawling sensations. These symptoms may occur in one or both legs and hips. Low back pain and/or pelvic pain often accompany sciatica.
Sciatica is brutal. Sciatica sufferers can't sleep, have trouble walking, sitting, bending and standing/ All sorts of activities from the waste down become difficult or impossible.
Sciatica, unfortunately, is among those long-burning illnesses that, historically, have been mysteries to the medical community. Sciatica sufferers have been frustrated in the past because any treatment tried has not helped or has only helped temporarily, often with unwanted side affects. According to Barry R. Cassileth, Ph.D., author and adjunct professor of medicine at the University of North Carolina, "Inadequate pain control often moves patients to seek more effective and less toxic alternatives. Patient want more gentle, effective, natural approaches to chronic illness." This is where safe, conservative chiropractic care comes into the picture.
Chiropractic focuses on the function of the body as it is coordinated and controlled by the nervous system. The health and ability of the nervous system to work is directly affected by the structural health of the spine. The way the spine lines up is critical because its 24 bones house the spinal cord, which send signals to the entire body. any misalignment or malfunction of the spinal bones that protect the spinal cord within can definitely create interferences to the signals sent to the organs, muscles and other tissues.
With sciatica, the misalignment of spinal bones results in interference and irritation to the large, important sciatic nerves. This irritation can continue and get worse without spinal correction. Hyperactive nerve firing, malfunction, muscle spasm, pain, and even disability may result.
Chiropractors have been treating the probable cause of sciatica for years. Recent, ongoing research has been very promising. The emphasis is on making sure the support structure of the body, the spinal bones, is in their right position allowing full function of the nerves, including the sciatic nerves. By using gentle pressure to realign the spinal bones, damaging interferences are removed and the body is restored to normal. The fire on the river is put out. Chiropractic may well be the answer to your sciatic pain. Call us today and we'll help you find out.
SAFE AT HOME
Home is NOT a safe haven from back injuries! Although accurate statistics on back injuries in the home are hard to gather, there are probably more injuries to the back and spine in our own private homes than anywhere else.
For example: Can you recall yourself, or a family member, slipping on a we floor? Falling off a chair that was being used as a ladder? Tumbling down the stairs? Tripping on the carpet? Falling backward over the cat, dog or baby? Pulling on a stuck window? Rising up and smacking your head on an open cabinet door, etc?
The vast majority of these accidents are not reported because they are not deemed serious enough at the time to seek treatment. We are often inclined to think, that with a little home therapy, the symptoms will gradually disappear.
Very often, the symptoms DO tend to fade as the body adapts to the injury. But many home injuries, creating spinal misalignments are somewhat like wheel misalignments on our car. Lets say we hit a curb and blow out a tire. We solve the immediate problem by replacing the damaged tired with a new one. However, if the car's wheel alignment is now out of balance, the life expectancy of the new tire will definitely be shortened and it can also interfere with other related functions. Common sense tells us we should balance the tires and check the wheel alignment following such an accident.
Our common sense also tells us that it would be wise to check our spinal alignment, too! The bruises, bumps and pain from home injuries may be gone in a matter of days or weeks, but they can then be replaced with the symptoms of recurring aches, pains, stiffness and occasional headaches.
When home injuries produce spinal misalignments, they can sometimes be so slight they do not cause any noticeable symptoms at all until the injury (spinal misalignment) is aggravated by physical and/or emotional stress.
Because most of us have experienced a home accident at one time or another, we should all have regular chiropractic check-ups. The sooner the better.
A muscle spasm is defined as "a sudden violent involuntary contraction of a muscle or a group of muscles. A spasm is attended by pain and interference with function, producing involuntary movement and distortion."
The most common or familiar form of muscle spasm is the involuntary contraction of a leg muscle. Next in line are those muscles, wish may be strained beyond their normal level of endurance such as the back muscles.
The muscles spasm, they freeze in contraction and become a hard knotty mass rather than normally contracting and relaxing in quick succession. When this occurs, the blood vessels that normally feed the muscles and supply oxygen constrict which compounds the problem even more.
The physiology of the body, including the contracting and relaxing of the muscles, is under the direct control of the nervous system. Any interference with the normal flow of nerve energy between the brain and the muscles can result in spasms. Severe examples of this are seen in stroke cases where there is damage to the brain.
Fortunately, most muscle spasms are due indirectly or directly to minor disturbances of the flow of nerve energy between the brain and the muscles and readily treatable. Where muscle spasms are concerned, chiropractic is the treatment of choice because it normalizes the flow of nerve energy by restoring normal tone while bringing the body's musculoskeletal system back into balance.
If you know someone suffering with chronic or recurring muscle spasms, please suggest they call our office for an appointment.
On the Job Back Injuries...
No matter what type of job you have, you may at some time experience any injury to your back because there are more injuries to the back at work than any other place.
With proper authorization, our office is qualified to treat on the job injuries under Workmen's Compensation.
If you are injured on the job, be sure to report the injury to your supervisor and request chiropractic care.