Health Tip: Suffering Sciatica

Pain radiates from your lower back down your leg

(HealthDayNews) -- If you start feeling pain in your lower back or hip that radiates down from your buttock to the back of one thigh and into your leg, your problem may be a protruding disc in the lower spinal column pressing on the roots to your sciatic nerve.

This condition is called sciatica, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons says.

You're most likely to get sciatica when you're 30 to 50 years old. It may stem from general wear and tear, plus any sudden pressure on the discs that cushion the vertebrae of your lower spine.

The gel-like inside of a disc may protrude into or through the outer lining. This herniated disk may press directly on nerve roots that become the sciatic nerve.

The condition usually heals itself if you give it enough time and rest. Tell your doctor how your pain started, where it travels, and what it feels like. X-rays and other imaging tools such as MRI may confirm your doctor's diagnosis.

You'll probably need at least a few days of bed rest while the inflammation subsides. Medications such as ibuprofen, aspirin, or muscle relaxants also may help.

Find positions that are comfortable, but be as active as possible. Motion helps to reduce inflammation. Most of the time, your condition will get better within a few weeks. If it doesn't, see your doctor.

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