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Five triggers that cause sciatica to flare up

Sciatica Triggers

Sciatica is a common cause of lower back and leg pain in American adults. Some people have constant pain in the sciatic nerve while others experience frequently recurring flare-ups. 

Certain habits and lifestyle choices can contribute to flare-ups of sciatic nerve pain. Take a look at some of the factors that trigger sciatica below to identify areas where you need to make some changes. 

Five triggers that cause sciatica flare-ups

  1. Smoking — Smoking causes your blood vessels to constrict, which restricts blood flow from reaching your lower back. This causes the muscles to grow more tense and stiff and reduces lubrication in the joints of your spine and hips. This can result in more frequent flare-ups of irritation and inflammation that cause sciatica.
  2. Excess weight — Too much body weight increases strain on the lower back. This results in an increase of pressure on the spine that can irritate the sciatic nerve. Try to maintain a healthy weight level to help prevent sciatica.
  3. Prolonged sitting — Sitting for extended periods of time puts strain on your lower back that can irritate the sciatic nerve. If you have a job that requires a lot of sitting, make sure you take frequent breaks to move around and stretch to help prevent sciatica flare-ups.
  4. Improper footwear — Poorly fitting footwear or footwear without enough arch support can cause problems in your ankles, knees, hips and back, including sciatica flare-ups. Invest in properly fitted footwear or orthotics to help reduce flare-ups.
  5. Poor diet — Not getting enough lean proteins, unsaturated fats, vitamins and minerals can keep your muscles, ligaments, tendons and other parts of your body from functioning at their fullest. Make sure you’re eating well to help fuel your body and avoid unhealthy foods that restrict your blood flow or cause you to gain too much weight. 

Visit SSOR for sciatica treatment

Is sciatica causing pain in your lower back and legs that keeps you from enjoying many of your favorite activities? Our team at SSOR can provide physical therapy treatments to help reduce and prevent sciatic nerve pain. Contact our team today for more information about sciatica or to schedule an initial appointment.