Sciatica is the pain that happens when the sciatic nerve experiences irritation. The pain usually takes place in the lower back and extends to the legs. Sciatica pain can be excruciating and can highly impact the quality of life. In this article, you will find a list of home remedies that can help you ease the symptoms of sciatica. Read on to know more.
- SCIATICA PAIN
- HOME TREATMENTS FOR SCIATICA
- NATURAL INGREDIENTS THAT HELP WITH SCIATICA AND HOW TO USE THEM
- READY MADE TREATMENT FOR SCIATICA PAIN OVER THE COUNTER
Sciatica pain is related to the nervous system. It happens as a result of excess pressure on the lumbar disc. Bad posture, stress injury that causes disc hernia, spine-related infections, pregnancy all can trigger sciatica pain.
If the pain lasts longer that one week or/and it is getting worse day by day it is mandatory to visit the doctor.
Home treatments for sciatica
When sciatica pain occurs steps for relief can be taken at home.
Cold and heat approach
Ice packs and heat can be used to ease the pain of sciatica and help you to function better.
It is recommended to use the ice packs for the first few days the first seven days. Placing ice packs on the lower back can help to reduce inflammation of the sciatic nerve. Icepacks shouldn’t directly touch the skin. Leave them in place for 15 to 20 minutes at a time, with a 15- to 20-minute break in between.
Another way to apply cold to a painful area is an ice massage.
Hot packs. Heat is applied to the painful area after a few days of using ice packs. Hot packs, a heat lamp, or a heating pad on the lowest setting can be used for this approach.
Improving the posture
The lower back needs proper support and if the body posture is not good, then the lower back will continue to be painful. When sitting there should be some kind of lumbar support or cushion.
To fix the root of your sciatic pain, the specific muscles that are pinching the nerves have to be targeted with exercises. Exercises for improving the core and for back straightening or excercises for hip or leg may be needed. A daily exercise routine can help to resolve symptoms now and prevent pain in the future.
Acupuncture is a way of healing, by which the organism is brought into balance by its own forces. The advantage of acupuncture over other medical disciplines is that no medications are introduced into the body. It cures problems such as sciatica or neuralgia, and at the same time has a positive effect on the whole organism, bringing it into balance.
Natural ingredients that help with sciatica and how to use them
Over time, people have discovered how much they can learn from nature and they have discovered the multitude of benefits that nature provides. Nature hides solutions for a wide range of health problems for men. Sciatica is one of them. Natural ingredients that have efficiency in dealing with sciatica are next:
Boswellia (lat. – Boswellia Serrata)
Resin made from Boswellia extract has been used for centuries in Asian and African folk medicine. It’s considered that it can treat chronic inflammatory illnesses as well as a number of other health conditions. Some clinical trials have shown that the plant Boswellia has shown the same efficacy as conventional painkillers. Studies have confirmed that the active ingredients of Boswellia are much more effective than modern anti-inflammatory drugs and have no negative side effects. The active substances contained in Boswellia have an analgesic effect and reduce the production of inflammatory chemicals. Boswellia is available as a resin, pill, or cream. For a homemade Boswellia cream you will need:
- 4 cups of sesame oil
- 6 tablespoons of Boswellia granules/powder
- One 32 oz canning jar
Mix oil and powder into the sterilized jar. Seal it up and let it sit away from direct sunlight.
The mixture can be used after 7 days.
Devil’s claw (lat. – Harpagophytum procumbens)
The root of this plant, native to South Africa, contains iridoid glycosides that have analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. Devil’s claw is a plant known for its effect on pain caused by arthritis and sciatica. Studies have shown that the devil’s claw is as effective as conventional medications for sciatica and arthritis, but safer to use. There are also scientific researches that devil’s claw significantly reduces pain intensity, stiffness, and muscle weakness in people with lower back pain. Devil’s claw can be found as a concentrated extract, capsule, tablet, or powder. For homemade Devil’s claw cream you will need:
- ½ cup (8 Tbsp) devils claw and cayenne pepper-infused oil
- 2 Tbsp beeswax
- 1 oz cocoa butter
Mix all together and heat in microwave watching so that the beeswax melts, but no longer. After melting the mix very well pour it into a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Cool it off before placing the lid on. Keep in a cool dark place like a medicine cabinet.
Note that the product will sting if it gets near the eyes so you need to take great care when applying it.
Magnesium -This mineral is present in whole grains, nuts, seeds, legumes, and green vegetables. Magnesium stops the production of an inflammatory substance called Substance P, which can reduce back pain, muscle cramps, and muscle weakness in fibromyalgia. Magnesium has a relaxing effect on muscles, which may also assist in alleviating painful symptoms. Magnesium can be absorbed orally and transdermally (through the skin). For homemade magnesium cream you will need:
- 1/2 cup magnesium oil- You can make your own magnesium oil with 1/2 cup magnesium flakes and 3 tablespoons of water.
- 5 grams beeswax
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 100 grams shea butter
- 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder
- Essential oil- lavender, geranium, and frankincense oil
Place the coconut oil, beeswax, and shea butter in a mason jar, large Pyrex measuring cup, or Pyrex bowl.
Put two or three inches of water in a small pot, place the mason jar in the pot, and place over medium heat on the stove/range. Stir occasionally and keep an eye on the water.
Once the mixture has melted completely, carefully remove the mason jar from the double boiler.
Allow the mixture to cool until it becomes slightly cloudy looking.
When cooled start mixing and slowly add the magnesium oil. Keep blending until it is fully combined with the butter mixture.
Add the arrowroot powder and essential oils (30 drops of lavender, 15 of geranium, and 10 of frankincense) and mix to combine. When done transfer muscle rub to jars.
Turmeric ( Curcuma longa ) – is a flowering plant of the ginger family. The plant is native to the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia.
Turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties, which help to relieve swelling and pain associated with sciatica. The spice is available in powdered form and also in capsules and tablets. Turmeric is helpful with sciatica pain caused by tense muscles or muscle spasms. Turmeric is also a powerful antioxidant capable of improving our immune system. Make sure to use turmeric and black pepper together. The addition of piperine increases the absorption of curcumin. Without a bioavailability enhancer such as piperine, your body will have a difficult time fully utilizing the product. For homemade Tumeric cream you will need:
- 1/2 cup turmeric powder (125 ml) –
- 1 cup water (250 ml)
- 1/2 cup water extra, (125 ml)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper (7.5 ml)
- 70 ml cold-pressed Olive or Coconut oil
Add turmeric to water in a pan. Heat gently along with stirring. Do this till you get a thick paste.
This can take anything from 6 to 10 min.
If the paste is watery, add some more turmeric, if it’s too thick, add some water.
In the end, add the pepper and oil.
Keep stirring to ensure that all ingredients are mixed properly and cool it.
Keep it in a jar and refrigerate it. This will ensure you can make it once and use it for a few days.
Ginger (Zingiber officinale) – is a flowering plant. Ginger root or ginger is widely used as a spice and in folk medicine. Ginger has been used to treat inflammation for centuries. It’s been shown in several studies to help relieve pain from osteoarthritis of the knee in particular. It is one of the most powerful anti-inflammatory foods. It blocks the formation of the inflammatory compounds–prostaglandins and leukotrienes–and also has antioxidant effects that break down existing inflammation and acidity in the fluid within the joints.
Ginger has long been used as an herbal remedy to relieve motion sickness, morning sickness, general nausea, and upset stomach, and, more recently, post-surgical nausea and chemotherapy-induced nausea. For homemade ginger ointment you will need:
- A few drops of ginger essential oil
- Carrier oil of your choice
Dilute the ginger essential oil with a carrier oil like olive oil and apply this blend to your lower back.
Aloe vera – is a succulent plant species it originates from the Arabian Peninsula, but grows wild in tropical, semi-tropical, and arid climates around the world. It is full of health benefits that range from haircare and skincare to weight loss and digestion. The leaves contain a gel with more than 75 bioactive compounds. Aloe vera is a rich source of glycosides such as aloin which have powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These ingredients are responsible for providing relief from pain and reducing the risk of inflammation. Aloe vera contains vitamins A, C, and E which are all antioxidants, as well as folic acid, choline, and vitamin B12. There are eight different enzymes found in aloe vera including ones that reduce excessive inflammation and others that help break down sugars and fats.
Aloe vera has a variety of minerals, such as magnesium, calcium, potassium, zinc, chromium, copper, selenium, manganese, and sodium effects.
The fatty acids within aloe vera all help with inflammation, while lupeol specifically has analgesic and antiseptic properties. Two main ways to use aloe vera are orally and topically.
Topical use: Break open the plant’s leaves and massage the gel directly to the affected area or you can take aloe vera pulp/powder/gel mixed with 1-2 pinch turmeric. Apply directly to the affected area once or twice a day.
Black pepper (Piper nigrum) – is a flowering vine in the family Piperaceae, cultivated for its fruit, known as a peppercorn. Black pepper is rich in a plant compound called piperine that contains potent antioxidant properties. Along with piperine, black pepper contains other anti-inflammatory compounds — including the essential oils limonene and beta-caryophyllen which protect against inflammation and cellular damage. Black pepper contains dietary fiber and a small amount of protein and carbohydrate. It is full of minerals such as calcium, sodium, magnesium, and potassium. One of its greatest benefits it the ability to speed up the absorption of medications and other beneficial ingredients by preventing the substance from being oxidized or metabolized when it first passes through the liver. To help your sciatica pain with black pepper you will need:
- 3-5 drops of black pepper oil
- ½ teaspoon of carrier oil
Blend it and add it on a hot compress and apply it to the affected area. Not suitable during pregnancy.
Peppermint (Mentha × Piperita) – is a hybrid mint, a cross between watermint and spearmint. It originates from Europe and the Middle East.
This plant has both analgesic and stimulating properties that work simultaneously to enhance circulation for the body to repair and to create a numbing effect on pain. Peppermint oil and leaves have a cooling effect when used topically for muscle pain, nerve pain, relief from itching. Peppermint can be used on localized pain and has a cooling effect on inflammation. It is also referred to as liquid ice. Peppermint leaf is available in the form of tea, capsules, and as a liquid extract.
Peppermint oil is available as liquid solutions and in capsules. To help your sciatica pain with peppermint you will need:
- 1/2 cup coconut oil
- 2 tsp beeswax pellets
- 15 drops of peppermint oil
Not recommended during pregnancy.
Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus) – is a genus of over seven hundred species of flowering trees, shrubs, or mallees in the myrtle family, Myrtaceae. Most species of Eucalyptus are native to Australia. The leaves of Eucalyptus are dried, crushed, and distilled to release the essential oil. After the oil has been extracted, it must be diluted before it can be used as medicine. Eucalyptus oil helps to reduce pain and inflammation associated with many conditions. It is also helpful to people with back pain or those recovering from a joint or muscle injury. It has a warming and soothing effect, as well as anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. With all its capabilities eucalyptus is the perfect choice to target sciatica symptoms of nerve pain and leg spasms. Eucalyptus promotes the flow of therapeutic cells in the area. For homemade eucalyptus ointment you will need:
- 15-20 g of sour cream
- 4-5 drops of oil.
Mix it and apply to the affected area.
Lavender (Lavandula) – is a genus of 47 known species of flowering plants in the mint family, Lamiaceae. It is one of the most popular natural ingredients for pain relief. It functions as a pain reliever because the oil contains linalyl acetate and linalool anti-inflammatory components. It is particularly recommended to those looking for pain relief for headaches, muscle tensions, or spasms, as well as joint pains, arthritis, and sciatica. It reduces sciatic back pain, but it also aids in relaxation and avoiding sciatica triggers such as stress. It is considered that it has anti-inflammatory, antifungal, antidepressant, antiseptic, antibacterial, and antimicrobial properties, as well as antispasmodic, analgesic, detoxifying, hypotensive, and sedative effects. To help your sciatica pain you will need:
- 3 1/2 ounces (100 grams) olive oil
- 1/2 ounce (15 grams) beeswax pastilles (or 1/4 ounce candelilla wax)
- 20 to 40 drops lavender essential oil
Place the oil and wax in a heatproof container. Put it into a pot of water and let it heat until wax is melted. Remove from heat and add lavender essential oil. Immediately pour into tins.
Wintergreen – is a group of aromatic plants. The term “wintergreen” once commonly referred to plants that remain green (continue photosynthesis) throughout the winter.
Wintergreen is one of the effective essential oil solutions for immediate pain relief. It is highly effective because it contains methyl salicylate, the main component, and the active ingredient of aspirin.
It is very helpful to those who also experience leg spasms secondary to sciatica because it reduces the irritation and compression of the sciatic nerve. Aside from that, it can provide relief for other nerve pains, as well as arthritis, headaches, and dysmenorrhea. Wintergreen essential oil can be used in gels, creams, lotions, or oils. To help your sciatica pain with wintergreen you will need:
- ¼ cup aloe vera gelly
- 1 tbsp. yarrow (Achillea millefolium) hydrosol (or lavender)
- 1 tsp. lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) hydrosol
- 1 tbsp. St. John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum) herbal oil
- 1 tsp. arnica (Arnica montana) herbal oil
- 40 drops Wintergreen essential oil
- 20 drops Peppermint essential oil
- 30 drops Laurel (Laurus nobilis) essential oil
Mix aloe vera gel with the hydrosols and herbal oils. Stir with a whisk or stainless steel fork or spoon. Add essential oils and stir until well combined. Scoop gel into a 2-ounce glass jar.
Oats remedy for sciatica
Put a teaspoon of oat seeds in 2 dcl of water and let it cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Drain the mixture and drink a cup several times a day. In addition to drinking tea, boiled hot oats should be applied to sore spots every 4 hours. This folk remedy helps against sciatica and inflammation of the joint.
Ready made treatment for sciatica pain over the counter
But for that suffering from sciatica who don’t have the time or are not prone to experimenting in the kitchen, there are ready-made natural solutions available for over the counter purchase.
One of such remedies is Acuraflex cream. Acuraflex cream is much more effective than homemade preparations because it contains most of the above-mentioned herbs altogether. The ingredients of Acuraflex cream are exclusive of plant origin and in addition to plant extracts contain vitamins, minerals, and essential oils. It is based on turmeric and contains as many as 13 active plants, minerals, and antioxidants. In addition to a specific painful and inflamed area, Acuraflex natural formula has a wide range of effects on all organs and parts of the body. It does not cause side effects, nourishes the skin, and has a pleasant smell.
To find out more about Acuraflex cream or where to buy it click HERE.