How Osteopathy Can Treat Sciatica

Osteopathy for Sciatica

Osteopathy can treat a range of conditions, sciatica included. Whether your sciatica is caused by an issue with a disc, joint, or muscle, osteopaths use a variety of techniques to help ease your pain and get you back on your feet.  

This blog will discuss the causes and symptoms of sciatica, and how osteopathy can help to relieve the resulting pain. For personalised advice in the Brisbane region, contact our friendly and helpful team at The Whole Body Clinic today. 

Sciatica Causes 

Sciatica is a condition caused by compression of the sciatic nerve, leading to irritation. Causes of sciatica can include: 

  • Arthritis and joint degeneration— wear and tear associated with arthritis can cause bone spurs, pressing on nerves in the lower back. 
  • Bulging, slipped, prolapsed, or herniated disc— these can lead to pressure on the nerves in the spine. 
  • Piriformis muscle tension/Piriformis syndrome— this muscle is near the top of the hip joint and when it goes into spasm, pressure is placed on the sciatic nerve. 
  • Pregnancy— sciatica in pregnancy is most common in the mid to late stages due to changes in the body. 
  • Muscle spasms— a muscle spasm in the lower back, hamstring, or gluteal region can lead to sciatic pain. 
  • Spondylolisthesis— this is a spinal condition which causes vertebrae to slip out of place which can affect the sciatic nerve. 
  • Tumour or infection– although less common, a tumour or infection can create pressure on the sciatic nerve. 

Sciatica Symptoms 

The symptoms of sciatica are typically focused on the lower back, buttocks, legs, and feet. The symptoms vary from person to person, and the pain itself varies as well. Common symptoms include: 

  • Pain in the lower back, buttocks, legs, and feet— this pain can be sharp, shooting, dull, or achy 
  • Numbness and tingling 
  • Weakness 
  • Throbbing pain while sitting 
  • Pain when lifting heavy items 
  • Worsening pain with prolonged sitting or standing 
  • Worsening pain when coughing, sneezing, bending forward or backwards, or twisting 

Osteopathy Treatment for Sciatica 

Osteopathy is an excellent treatment for sciatica. An osteopath will take your health history into account, checking for any previous injuries or illnesses that may be contributing. They will then conduct a careful and thorough assessment of your joints and muscles to determine the cause and best course of treatment.  

Osteopaths take a holistic approach to healthcare, so they will look at other areas of your body to see how they all work together. Treatment involves decreasing inflammation in affected areas by using gentle techniques such as: 

  • Stretching 
  • Gentle release of muscles and connective tissues 
  • Massage 
  • Muscle energy techniques 
  • Mobilisation and articulation of joints and muscles 
  • Dry needling  

Once pain has been managed and reduced, an osteopath will work with you to move onto exercises for rehabilitation. 

Looking For an Osteopath in Brisbane? 

If you’re experiencing sciatic pain, we hope this blog has been helpful for you. Whole Body Clinic is located in Mount Gravatt and Park Ridge, and offers treatment to residents throughout the Brisbane area. Our team of experienced osteopaths are passionate about helping to reduce your pain so you can live the life you’ve always wanted.  

To find out more or to book an appointment, give us a call on (07) 3480 0041 or book an appointment online