Aside from learning how to massage sciatica trigger points and getting the best orthopedic seat cushion for sciatica, another natural way to relieve sciatica pain is with the use of ice packs.
But, where to put ice pack for sciatica? Can ice packs actually help with sciatica pain? Find the answers to your questions here.
Ice Packs and Sciatica: Can It Help?
Ice or cold therapy is recommended when your sciatica is acute or flares up. It helps by:
- As opposed to taking oral pain-relieving medications which have a body-wide (systemic) effect, an ice pack can act locally.
- It decreases inflammation. Lowering the tissue temperature which can then decrease tissue metabolism and oxygen intake, reducing the overall inflammatory process.
- Numbs the area. The reduction in tissue temperature causes a numbing effect due to the constriction of blood vessels and a decrease in blood flow.
Where to Put Ice Pack for Sciatica
When you use ice or cold therapy for sciatica pain, apply the ice pack to your lower back and rear pelvis – where the sciatic nerve roots are located.
Icing this area, rather than your thigh or calf where the pain may be more present, will help control and numb the pain at its source and also calm the nearby nerves.
Some precautions to keep in mind:
- Overuse or an extended duration of ice or cold therapy may lead to skin damage, such as frostbite and/or damage to the superficial nerves (neuropathy).
So, make sure to check the duration. Apply the ice pack (or another cooling source) to the affected area for about 15 – 20 minutes at a time with a 2-hour break before the next application.
- Put on a barrier. Protect your skin by placing a cloth or other protective barrier between yourself and the source of cold.
If ice packs aren’t enough to relieve your pain, you might want to consider seeing a chiropractor or the best doctor for sciatica nerve pain.
They would be able to better assess your condition and provide necessary treatments and therapies.
Disclaimer: The information on this site is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. All information contained on this website is for general information purposes only.