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Seriously, 3 days ago, something happened. Something terribly painful, and downright inconvenient. I believe I've pinched my sciatic nerve. Since Thursday, I cannot sit for longer than an hour at a time (and that's pushing it!) and I'm having trouble walking properly too. And I normally sleep on my left side, but it is my left side that is affected and so now it hurts to sleep on that side, and when I try to sleep on the other side, the left leg cramps up. So I've been sleepless in Niagara...ok, that wasn't funny...anyhoo...

The pain starts at my tail bone, to the top of my left buttock, and down the left leg. I normally do not have any pharmaceutical drugs in my house, but I since got my hands on some aspirin which has helped the inflammation, and I bought certain fruits, such as pineapple and cherries which also have anti-inflammatory properties.

Tomorrow I'll probably have to go the clinic nearby to get it checked out, if the pain hasn't subsided substantially, more to rule out anything else this could be.

In the meantime, I've found myself wishing I had a stand-up desk set-up right about now...

Has anyone ever had this happen to them? And if so, what did you do to get relief and how long did it take to heal?
  • Profile picture of the author KimW
    Sorry about your disconfort, but when I first read the thread title I thought it was going to be a post about how much fun you have been having dancing!
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    • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
      I'm too tired to dance, Kim

      I'm going to have to log soon..I've reached my limit for sitting.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rick McCombs
    Karen, your right on about having a pinched sciatic nerve. I had that happen to me 3 years ago and it was just as you described your symptoms. I ended up going to a good chiropractor to get my spine adjusted. Cold compresses on the lower spine helps with the pain, but no longer than 20 minutes at a time. Ibuprofen helps too.
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  • Profile picture of the author KimW
    I drink a juice everyday for imflammation. PM me and I'll tell you the name.
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  • Profile picture of the author Patrician
    HI Karen.

    I go for Chiropractic maintenance regularly. I live with several ice packs in my freezer and they are both a God-send.

    I used to have chronic Sciatica - what has made the big difference is sleeping with a pillow between my knees - When in a crisis laying on your back with a big pillow under the knees also helps relieve the pressure on that nerve.

    An exercise my old Chiro gave me is to do both while laying down on your back on the floor, and also standing (hang on to the wall or a chair back).

    Rotate Left heel and Right toe and then Right heel and Left toe and when you do the heel part on the leg that bites, pull down pretty hard (slowly) to stretch your leg - this is real good to kind of pull it back into place - just do it for like a few minutes at a time.

    (another clue in ergonomics they tell you to have a foot stool (phone book works) at your workstation so that there is less pressure on your lower back from sitting for long periods).

    Hope that helps and that you feel better soon.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kurt
    I'll get it when I go on long driving trips. But when I get it, I'm the opposite and can't stand or walk without a lot of pain.


    Like Pat said, I need to really try to stretch my lower back/hip. And a pillow between your knees, sleeping in the fetal position helps too.

    4-5 times a day I needed to on the floor on my back and just move and stretch that area as much as possible. It takes a couple of days for me to get it loose enough, but then I'll get a real little "pop" and it starts feeling better right away and is back to normal a couple of days after that.

    Check out Youtube for some lower back stretching exercises...There's a few good ones.

    And as Pat and Rick said, a chiro will probably speed things up a day or two...
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    • Profile picture of the author ThomM
      Karen you shouldn't sit for more then an hour without getting up and walking around some.
      One of the main causes of sciatica is prolonged sitting.
      The first time I had it I was able to get rid of it by walking, the second time it was more severe and I had a laminectomy to correct it.
      But my sciatica was pretty severe.
      Also sciatica is a term used to describe the symptoms and not the cause of a problem. The cause in my case was degenerative disc disease which almost severed my sciatic nerve.
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  • Profile picture of the author Epic Stephen
    Sounds like you need a good massage. but anyway it must be terrible sorry to hear that
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    • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
      thanks everyone for responding to this thread and for the pm's. I'm trying to get in the local clinic today or tomorrow in order to rule anything else out. I feel a bit better today, but last night was rough because my left leg kept on cramping up.

      I'm rarely sick, because of my positive attitude, my vitamin regimen, but my age and constantly sitting is starting to take it's toll, I suppose.

      anyway, I appreciate all the suggestions and good wishes.

      Take care and enjoy your Sunday!
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      • Profile picture of the author Ron Kerr
        Please see your doctor ASAP Karen as your problem may (and probably isn't) very serious. I had similar problems many years ago and had physiotherapy and drugs that did nothing to improve the problem and may has worsened it, as as I has spinal stenosis, leading to a major operation that has left me in permanent pain.

        A subsequent operation to remove titanium nuts and bolts that may have been causing pain did nothing to help.

        I can't stress the point enough that you probably don't have it but you must get it checked. I was told that I would most likely be a parapelegic if my operation was not performed.

        Your spine is not something that you can mess with and it is amazing how much impact it has on your body. For example, did you kmow that your balance is affected by your spine?

        Best of luck and I sincerely hope your problem is a minor one.

        Best Wishes,
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  • Hi Karen,
    I agree that you need to get this checked out thoroughly by a physician. There are many causes of those kinds of symptoms, and with proper diagnosis and treatment you will hopefully get relief.

    I've had some major pain from degenerative disks. Prayer can be another good treatment, notwithstanding the above advice.

    My best wishes to you!
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  • Profile picture of the author HeySal
    Ouch Karen. I've never had a problem with back pain of any kind, but my mom had sciatic problems. I don't know exactly how she treated it to make it eventually stop, but I can empathize with how miserable it must be.

    I hope that it all turns out well for you.........hope it's just a very temporary glitch.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kurt
    Hey Karen,

    Try this...Be slow and careful. If a little stretching feels good, keep going. This is the kind of thing that helps me, but I also try twisting my hips a little by keeping my knees together and moving them from left to right and back. Also in the same position, I rasie my hips about an inch off the ground and gently move them around in all directions.



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    • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
      well, here's an update...for all you Americans who think that we have such a great medical system here in Canada, think again. You'll see why in a moment.

      I don't have a family doctor here in Niagara. I did have one in Toronto and she was excellent, but I don't feel like travelling there to see her. So in order to get a family doctor here, I have to fill in an application. And then wait until I'm approved! Ugh!

      In the meantime, I went to an Urgent-Care clinic today. And saw a doctor, who disagreed that I have sciatica because apparently I shouldn't have pain if I touch my left thigh, or left butt bone, sciatica should feel like electric shock pain.

      So he thinks I may have pulled a hamstring. Based on my research and the knowledge I have about my own body, I doubt it.

      Now get this: he never touched me, never examined me, all he did was consult with me. I told him I came in to rule out anything serious, and his response was that he wouldn't be able to determine that until I have a MRI.

      So I asked, when can I get an MRI? His response was first we take an XRay...I asked again, when? He said, 1 week and the MRI in 1-3 months, but if I have $500 US I could drive to Niagara Falls, NY and get it done today!

      In the end, all he did was write up a prescription for me for a muscle relaxer and an anti-inflammatory drug - 2 Drugs I never even heard of. But before going to the clinic I already popped in the drug store and got myself a bottle of Ibuprofen, which I told the doctor about and all he said was don't take the prescription drugs with the Ibuprofen!

      So, I never bothered filling in the prescription, because I have fruits such as pineapple with anti-inflammatory properties, I have the Ibuprofen which I'll use sparingly and I'm going to try doing some of the stretches as shown in the video that Kurt kindly posted.

      A person could die in Canada while waiting to get the treatment they need. The sooner Canada adopts a two-tier medical system nationwide, the better off we'll be. Seriously.

      anyway, I'm more determined than ever to basicly heal myself. The body has the ability to heal itself with lots of rest, moderate exercise, and good nutrition, and that's what I plan on doing. I do feel better today, and hopefully, it will all sort itself out, because frankly, I cannot count on our medical system to make me better. I have to take matters into my own hands. And if I have to come to the US to get better treatment, then that's what I'll do.
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  • Profile picture of the author HeySal
    If you're going to come here, you better make it fast and you better check the price before you come and find a dr that will get you in right away. Some of us get put on waiting lists, too. Remember - we have a "new and improved" system kicking in some time and doctors, etc. are already reacting to it. It might be real hard to get help here, too.
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    • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
      Originally Posted by HeySal View Post

      If you're going to come here, you better make it fast and you better check the price before you come and find a dr that will get you in right away. Some of us get put on waiting lists, too. Remember - we have a "new and improved" system kicking in some time and doctors, etc. are already reacting to it. It might be real hard to get help here, too.
      yeah, don't I know it. Don't you just love socialism? oops..I better watch it, I guess, eh Sal, lol?

      thanks, though, I'll keep that in mind.
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      • Profile picture of the author ThomM
        In the meantime, I went to an Urgent-Care clinic today. And saw a doctor, who disagreed that I have sciatica because apparently I shouldn't have pain if I touch my left thigh, or left butt bone, sciatica should feel like electric shock pain.
        If the nerve is pinched in those two areas you would feel pain there if touched.
        As for sciatica feeling like electric shock, if it did I'd still have it
        I do know that the area where my sciatica originated from wasn't detected till I had an MRI. Cost me $1,000 for the MRI in 2002.
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  • Profile picture of the author Patrician
    What dorks. That is why i thank God every day I found Chiropractic. Yeh Dr. Dork - it may not be impinged to the degree where it is electrical shock YET - but going there - WOULDN'T it be best to treat it where it is at and maybe PREVENT it from getting worse? WOT? no comprende'? What? You say denial will work best? I don't think so.

    This is the basics they missed in school - that is SUB-CLINICAL symptoms - they can't see things until they are more serious and coincidentally where the cost goes up exponentially for CLINICAL conditions.

    In addition to back, foot and stomach issues where I was always told 'psychosomatic' - 'hypochondriac' - 'you are in great shape', 'just stress' they drove me almost insane until I found alternative medicine in the 70's. Chiropractic*, Podiatry*, natural foods and vitamins - MANAGEMENT and PREVENTION. * (have x-rays that anyone can see what the problems were and are if they just would've looked).

    I am learning more and more about conditions where there ARE alternatives to surgery and poison drugs and where HOLISTIC medicine - herbs, FOODS, vitamins, exercise and etc are all you need 99% of the time.

    Yeh well always best to rule something more serious out - BUT ONLY IF IT DOESN'T GO AWAY FIRST.

    GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR.

    9 times out of 10 just ICE will help because it reduces swelling. Can't hurt and might just help.
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    • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
      Originally Posted by Patrician View Post


      I am learning more and more about conditions where there ARE alternatives to surgery and poison drugs and where HOLISTIC medicine - herbs, FOODS, vitamins, exercise and etc are all you need 99% of the time.
      I'm with you there, Patricia. and it's just how I'm going to heal this thing...btw, I am better and have been sitting for a few hours with minor discomfort. I couldn't do this yesterday
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  • Profile picture of the author Kurt
    IMO non-medical opinion, but one based on experience, here's what I'd do...If it's a hammy, doing the stretching exercises in the video will hurt like hell and not help.

    But if those stretches feel good, then it's sciatic related and continue.

    Again, be real gentle, but your body will tell you if it's OK or not.
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    • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
      Originally Posted by Kurt View Post

      IMO non-medical opinion, but one based on experience, here's what I'd do...If it's a hammy, doing the stretching exercises in the video will hurt like hell and not help.

      But if those stretches feel good, then it's sciatic related and continue.

      Again, be real gentle, but your body will tell you if it's OK or not.
      tried the stretches...they did not hurt
      so thanks again...
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      • Profile picture of the author Lawrh
        It was probably the avatar change. The switch from demure to vivacious might have caused a circuit anomaly
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  • Profile picture of the author gareth
    Gee & I thought you were gunna say you had hemmeroidz
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    • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
      Originally Posted by gareth View Post

      Gee & I thought you were gunna say you had hemmeroidz
      I had those when I was pregnant with my son..they were nasty too
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  • Profile picture of the author global_warrior
    Hey sorry for that.Advices given by other members are good.did u meet ur doc.how are you now
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    • Profile picture of the author waterotter
      Hi Karen,

      I suffered with chronic sciatica for years. I went to chiropractors, physiotherapy, took muscle relaxers, you name it. Nothing lasted. In the early 1990's, I saw an inversion table on TSC (The Shopping Channel). It's the "Teeter Hang-ups model". I purchased this on their easy pay plan as I didn't know if it would help. After about 2 months of inverting, the sciatic pain was gone. It has never returned. I say to people, you could rob me blind, just don't take my inversion table! I couldn't live without it. This table is worth it's weight in gold. I can't recommend it enough. There are so many benefits from using this....I would need to start a blog to go into all the details!

      Go to Welcome to the home of Teeter Hang Ups - Helping to Relieve Back Pain since 1981 and check it out (not an affiliate link).

      If you decide to buy, go through The Shopping Channel. You will get a better price purchasing it here in Canada. TSC has a website where you could check out the pricing. I also bought the gravity boots!

      Hope this helps. If you buy, I know you won't regret it.

      waterotter
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      • Profile picture of the author waterotter
        Follow-up. At the time of purchasing this, I needed invasive surgery on my jaw. Not only have I not gone back to the chiropractor, I totally avoided the jaw surgery! My dentist was so impressed, he ordered one himself. The money I saved alone on chiropractors bills has more than paid for this.

        Anyone out there that is suffering from acute/chronic pain of any sort should seriously consider this. Consult your doctor first!

        One more benefit....no more pain med's.

        waterotter
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        • Profile picture of the author Karen Blundell
          I'm much much better, but have discomfort still on my left leg, and I'm having to get up at least once per hour and walk around.

          Thanks everyone for your kind concern
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          • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
            Karen,

            I'm so glad that you are doing better. I've been keeping an eye on this thread with some concern.

            Still, keep an eye on it and if you don't continue to see relief, do get it checked! I do believe that you are on the right track right where you are though, the body has awesome healing properties within itself!

            Keep us posted!

            Terra
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  • Profile picture of the author I.M.Retired
    Hi Karen: I really sympathize with you. Having had serious back pain in the past - it's not fun!

    Once you have seen your Doctor or Chiropractor, they will suggest what is best for your condition - at least I sincerely hope they will.

    I'm mainly responding to this post to share a book that has helped me beyond belief. I have never had back pain since I started doing these extremely simple exercises.

    The book is: "The Core Program: 15 Minutes a Day That Can Change Your Life" by Peggy Brill - a New York physiotherapist.

    She gears the exercises specifically towards women. I am totally amazed at how much they have helped me.

    I hope you get some relief soon!!!
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  • Profile picture of the author SmashTweet
    Karen, even I have lot of liquids - especially juices - for inflammation but a doc is the best advisor in such a situation.
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  • Profile picture of the author mrdomains
    Go to a chiropractor and get it sorted then get rid of the chair.

    Exchange the seat for a large Pilates Ball. You will find that it lets you sit at your desk at about normal height.

    I´m not kidding. It does wonders on many levels because your body continually microadjusts to keep you upright. Also keeps your bum from going numb.

    Seriously. Give it a try.
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    • Profile picture of the author waterotter
      Originally Posted by mrdomains View Post

      Go to a chiropractor and get it sorted then get rid of the chair.

      Exchange the seat for a large Pilates Ball. You will find that it lets you sit at your desk at about normal height.

      I´m not kidding. It does wonders on many levels because your body continually microadjusts to keep you upright. Also keeps your bum from going numb.

      Seriously. Give it a try.
      Cool...I used the same ball for a few years until I discovered the inversion table.
      It literally "straightened" me out. I still have that ball, but haven't used it! The inversion table for me is like having a chiropractor 24/7.
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  • Profile picture of the author Virtualghost
    Try the bridgepoint chiropractic clinic in Fort Erie Ont.no referral needed and their website lays out fees.Seems reasonable if have other medical insurance even better as OHIP opted out of this now and good credentials.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve1776
    I defiantly recomend the chiropractor. A good one can do wonders. My wife used to have migraine headaches that the chiropractor took care of. They align your spine so the nerves work and the body heals itself. I had one cure a cold. Took less than a day. As soon as he made the adjustment my sinuses started draining and the cold was gone in 24 hours.
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  • Profile picture of the author PeterDunin
    I really feel for you Karen i had exactly the same problem about 8 years ago,i had to give up my job because of it as it involved heavy lifting.At the time i was in so much pain that whatever painkillers i took didn't seem to touch it.A good anti-inflammatory that i still take to this day is diclofenac but the pain should subside soon,also really hot baths used to help me.
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  • Profile picture of the author antiquenh
    I think you need to go to the hospital to check it up so that necessary prescriptions will be given to you by the doctor.
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  • Profile picture of the author Connie Everson
    Karen
    I just saw your post. Hope you are feeling better...I also experienced sciatica and have degenerated discs in my lower back so I can sympathize with you. I'm in Niagara as well so I understand the challenge trying to get help from the medical community.
    There is a doctor taking new patients in Niagara Falls...I recently signed up and have had AMAZING care. Please PM me for details if interested...
    Connie
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  • Profile picture of the author phsims
    This happens to me on occasions, doing Yoga (or even just the warm up for it) will help A LOT
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  • Profile picture of the author seasoned
    Karen,

    You are kind of lucky, believe it or not. The spine is made of a lot of bones aligned rather precisely, and each has a channel that is rather precise. If one gets out of alignment, it can hurt, and allow others to come out of alignment.

    And YEAH, I had it happen, a bit over 10 years ago. I had C vertebra that would hurt the arms/hands, and L that hurt most stuff below the waist. LUCKILY, other areas have more support and are less likely to have such problems. I said you are lucky because you already KNOW it is your back!

    Kurt already gave some good clues on how to fix it. It is TRICKY! By that, I mean hit and miss. Emphasize what makes you feel better and... "If at first you don't succeed....". Ironically, you could probably get traction lying down in your chest and cure it relatively easily, but doctors here don't seem to consider that an option. They either go for exercises that tend to be a less precise and longer way of doing it, or surgery that could paralyze you or leave you in pain forever.

    Well, ICSM, about canada, etc..., but I won't.

    Steve
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    • Profile picture of the author ijohnson
      I've suffered from sciatica and had similar symptoms. I had some non-invasive back surgery in August and it has eliminated the intense pain I felt in my left leg. However, I am still experience some occasional stabbing pains in my right buttock if I bend down from the waist or stoop down to pick up something.

      I plan to really get into Yoga to help me with the back pain and these symptoms but I've been too busy with trying to build my niches online -- one of which is dedicated to back pain/sciatica.

      As a matter of fact, I was reviewing my site in anticipation of changing the header and uploading a lot of new content on health-related issues when I read my tagline and realized that I was getting away from the main focus of my website >> back pain relief. I then came over here to the Warrior Forum looking for some good "back pain PLR". Didn't find much of anything but I must admit I did get distracted with all the good threads found around here -- I need to get back on the hunt for some PLR on back pain and/or sciatica.

      Stumbling upon this thread tonight just further confirms what I realized earlier today ... that building my website with valuable content on "back pain" and related issues is where I should focus because the need for the information is there.

      When your livelihood is derived from your work at the computer, having back pain and/or sciatica is no joke! It can have a major impact on your ability to think clearly, get your work done and make a living.

      If exercise, meditation or any form of activity that's relieves back pain and stress is not already in our daily routine, we need to carve out some time for it.

      I wish all of you who suffer from back pain and/or sciatica the best!
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