Chiropractic Care For Sciatica

Dr. Troy Dreiling provides chiropractic care for sciatica and offers a free initial consultation where he will explain treatment. Zenaptic Chiropractic has been voted Clark County’s top chiropractor for 5 consecutive years! Schedule your free consultation by calling the clinic.

Video Transcription

Hey, it’s Dr. Troy here. Vancouver Washington sciatica chiropractor.

People with leg pain always label it as sciatica. Some people call it SKY-attica but it’s SI-atica which means pain in the leg. The sciatic nerve starts in the lower back. There are 5 nerve roots that come off the lower back to make up the sciatic nerve,the biggest nerve in your body which contributes to all leg functionality in your system.

If there is an impingement, any stretching due to misalignment or inflammation, that can irritate that sciatic nerve. We determine is there misalignment, is there pelvic instability or dysfunction to see if we can clear that up because if we can and that’s what’s causing the sciatica it will clear it up.

There are a couple of different techniques that we use. I use some blocking to help unlock the pelvis. You will notice immediately if we use these blocks under your pelvis if the tension comes off.

We do that in the consultation to determine if chiropractic is right for you. We do an exam. Sometimes the piriformis muscle will get tight, the glutes, hamstrings, quads, even the calves. It creates a lot of problems. so we look to see what is causing the nerve to be irritated.

We found there is a connection in the upper cervical, the atlas which is the first bone in the neck has a ligament that hooks on the inside of this bone that actually attaches to the cord which innervate the sciatic nerve. If it gets out of alignment it can affect the sciatic nerve.

I have had patients come in and the only thing wrong was the misalignment in their upper neck and it was causing sciatic pain. We know where the cause can be coming from. Your job is to come in, let us check you and see if we can help you. Call the office, that’s what we always recommend, call and we will schedule you a time to see if chiropractic is right for you.

This is Dr. Troy in Vancouver Washington, helping patients with sciatica.

More Information On Sciatica

sciatica pain - woman holding lower backThe sciatic nerve is located in the lower spine and spans the length of your buttocks, thighs, legs, and feet. It is the largest and widest single nerve in the body. It controls muscles and sensations in your legs, thighs, and feet.

Sciatica refers to the symptoms of the pain originating from the sciatic nerve. Typically, the pain begins as a result of compression on a spinal nerve. The diagnosis will be the cause of that compression. Symptoms vary in frequency and intensity depending on the specific nerve and the level of compression.

Lumbar radiculopathy is the medical term for sciatica. It is also referred to as radicular pain because the symptoms radiate from a spinal nerve. Sciatica most often affects people between ages 30 and 50.

Sciatica Causes

The common cause of sciatica is the compression of a nerve in the lower spine. It generally occurs due to normal wear and tear and not because of an injury. Many men carry their wallets in their back pocket. Sitting on that wallet continuously can lead to sciatic pain. A host of lower back problems can lead to it. The pain happens most often when the nerve roots, which are highly sensitive, are affected by a herniated or slipped disc. Other causes of sciatica include:

  • Misaligned vertebral bodies
  • Upper Cervical or neck misalignment
  • Arthritis in the spine
  • Pregnancy
  • Childbirth
  • Tumors
  • Diabetes
  • Constipation
  • Pelvis / Sacral biomechanical dysfunction

Sciatica Analysis And Treatment

There are many options for treating sciatica. Your symptoms and their frequency will determine the doctor’s recommendation for you. Some patients experience sharp pain, numbness, or a tingling sensation. Others feel a dull ache or throbbing. The pain may be felt in only one leg rather than both, while some people are affected by weakness in their feet.

Many patients opt for surgery to alleviate their prolonged pain. This is an option when non-surgical remedies do not provide relief or will not prevent future complications. It is common for patients to have pain that begins slowly and worsens over time. Bending over, coughing, or sneezing can elevate the pain. So can sudden movements or sitting for long periods of time.

For those that may respond well to non-surgical treatments, the following options are available:

  • Heat and cold therapy: Heating pads or ice packs are optimal ways of providing pain relief in the beginning stage. Simply apply heat or ice for about 20 minutes, then repeat in 2 hour intervals. Some patients report that they prefer using heat first while others use the ice initially. You can alternate the two methods. When utilizing the ice packs, place a cloth or towel under them to prevent ice burns.
  • Pain medicine: Taking prescription medication or over-the-counter (OTC) meds are another option for effectively alleviating pain from sciatica. Ibuprofen, naproxen, and other anti-inflammatory medication are very helpful as well. They reduce the inflammation which is typically part of the reason the pain exists.
  • Epidural steroid injection: This method can also reduce inflammation. Unlike oral medication, an epidural steroid injection targets the area where the pain is generated from. This option is recommended for patients with severe pain. The relief is sometimes temporary and may not have any effect, but for many people it provides enough comfort to enjoy daily tasks.

Sciatica And Chiropractic Care

Chiropractic treatment is an excellent method for treating sciatica. Doctors of Chiropractic (DC) are skilled in providing relief for patients who experience it. They will start with gathering information on your medical history. They will ask you to describe your symptoms and when they originated. You will also be asked which of your activities cause less or more discomfort.

The chiropractor will then perform a physical exam and neurological exam. He will pay particular attention to your legs and spine. This may include some simple tasks to measure strength, sensory abilities, and reflexes. A common task is lying down and raising each leg one at a time.

During their training and studies, chiropractors learn a vast array of adjustment techniques. These techniques allow doctors to treat various kinds of vertebral misalignments and dislocations. Some include a quick thrust and other methods pair minor pressure with a gentle application. To master each one of these techniques requires a high skill level and precise movements. Its carefully crafted treatments are what make it differ from general medical practices.

To further evaluate your pain and its cause, the doctor may suggest an x-ray, CT scan, or MRI. These imaging procedures can dismiss the probability that an infection or tumor is the cause. It is typically done when patients do not feel relief after 6 to 12 weeks of treatment.

Sciatica FAQ

Are there other tips that can help me control my sciatica?

Yes, if you want to control your sciatica, try these strategies:

  • Healthy diet and weight
  • Regular exercise
  • Correct posture
  • Stay active
  • No smoking
  • Proper lifting of objects

Will chiropractic treatment completely alleviate my sciatica?

Although chiropractic treatment is a viable option, sciatica is not always preventable. The cause of your sciatica can be due to other factors outside of chiropractic practice.

If your chiropractor feels your treatment will be best performed by a doctor of another specialty, he can refer you to someone. Generally, the chiropractor can still work with that specialist to co-manage your care.


Chiropractic treatment is a safe, drug-free, non-surgical option for patients. The objective of chiropractic care is to repair spinal movement. That will progress overall function and lessen your pain and inflammation. The treatment plan designed for you is predicated on the cause of your sciatica. Remember that sciatica is a set of symptoms not a single disorder. Your treatment plan may include a combination of therapies such as spinal adjustments, heat and ice therapy, rehabilitative exercise and more.

If you are suffering from sciatic pain, find out how we may be able to help you by setting up a FREE consultation today. We are committed to advancing the health and well-being of our patients. Call us today to learn how we can help you live an active life again!