5 Tips for Preventing Sciatica

Jan 16, 2024
Sciatica is a mobility-affecting, life-disrupting condition characterized by pain radiating along the path of the sciatic nerve. Here are several proactive strategies to prevent sciatica or reduce its recurrence.

Dealing with sciatica can be a real pain, literally! It's that nagging discomfort that starts in your lower back, shoots through one of your hips, and extends down your leg. 

Sciatica is due to things like a herniated disk or spinal stenosis (the narrowing of your spinal canal) nudging against your sciatic nerve. What you get is inflammation, pain, and sometimes a numb sensation in the leg.

At Repair, Recover, Restore in White Plains and Port Chester, New York, our seasoned team knows something about what it takes to maintain optimal spinal health and function. Here, we offer five insider tips to help you keep sciatica at bay.

1. Sit smart, stand smarter

Posture is your best friend when it comes to dodging sciatica. When you're seated, pick a chair that's like a hug for your lower back, offering good lumbar support, well-positioned armrests, and something that swivels. 

A pillow or rolled towel positioned at the lower back can also work wonders in keeping that natural curve. And when you're up and about, balance your weight like a pro: Maintain even weight on both feet, and keep your knees relaxed.

2. Get moving, but gently

Your back loves it when you move, but let's not go overboard. Regular, gentle exercise keeps it strong and happy. Yoga and Pilates are like magic for your lower back and abs, as are regular walks, bike rides, and time swimming laps. Strength training is also highly beneficial, as long as you don’t overdo it. Stretching is non-negotiable, both before and after your workout.

3. Adopt a sciatica-friendly diet

You may never have thought that the food you put on your plate could affect your sciatica, but it can. Anti-inflammatory foods are your allies — think leafy greens, nuts, whole grains, berries, and fatty fish like salmon. Staying well-hydrated can also help keep the pain at bay. 

If you’re prone to sciatica (or any other chronic pain condition, for that matter) you’ll want to avoid processed, sugary, and high-fat foods that can cause inflammation and worsen your pain symptoms.

4. Lift like you mean it

If your day's all about lifting, bending, and twisting, you need to be extra careful. Lift with your legs, not your back. Keep your back straight as an arrow and bend the knees. Twisting while lifting is a big no-no. And if it's too heavy, get someone else to help or grab a dolly.

5. Schedule regular chiropractic visits

We can't stress this preventive measure enough: Regular check-ins with your chiropractor can be a game changer. We're like detectives for potential spinal issues, and we have the tools, techniques, and insight you need to keep your spine in top form, including spinal adjustments, massage therapy, exercises, stretches, and specific lifestyle recommendations. 

Don't let sciatica win

If you're experiencing back pain or sciatica symptoms, we’re here to help. Give us a call today, or clink online to schedule a consultation with our compassionate team at Repair, Recover, and Restore in White Plains and Port Chester, New York, any time.