Sciatica is an extremely painful nerve condition that can affect people of all ages. However, cases of sciatica are more common among people who are older than forty years of age than among others. Younger people who perform strenuous exercises or play sports such as basketball or football are also prone to suffering from this problem.
As the name suggests, sciatica affects the sciatic nerve, which is present in the hip region of the human body. When this nerve is compressed due to any reason, the affected person suffers from tremendous pain and discomfort. Sciatica occurs when the surrounding bones and tissues compress this nerve. When a person suffers from an injury, these surrounding bones and tissues put excessive amounts of pressure on the sciatic nerve and this causes shooting pain in the area.
It becomes extremely difficult to move the affected area or even to touch it. The affected person must rest the area until the injury heals. There are several herbs that can be used in the treatment of this condition. Given below are some of these useful herbs. However, it is important to mention that all herbs must be used only under the guidance of a medical expert.
Herbal Remedies for Treating Sciatica
This herb is noted for its excellence in the treatment of inflammations that might be present anywhere in the human body. Juniper is able to combat these inflammations and bring relief to the patient. In the case of sciatica, one can make use of juniper in the form of a paste. Apply this paste to the affected area of the body and massage the area gently.
If it is too painful to do so, you can place a cloth that has been soaked in juniper juice, over the affected area. Rinse the area after about half an hour. This must be done on a regular basis until the pain disappears completely. Juniper supplements can also be utilized in the treatment of sciatica.
This herbal oil is excellent in its action on sciatica. It contains an ingredient that is known as methyl salicylate. This ingredient is able to combat the pain that is associated with this condition.
A small amount of this oil must be placed directly on the affected area of the body. It can be rubbed into the skin to facilitate absorption. It is important to note that oil of wintergreen must not be consumed internally as it is highly toxic.
St. John’s wort
This herb is extremely popular in the treatment of sciatica. It can be rubbed into the affected portions of skin. This helps to bring quick relief from the symptom of pain. Apart from local application, this herb can also be consumed internally to tackle the symptom of inflammation from within the body. This plant contains several chemicals, which are able to combat the symptoms of pain and inflammation within a short span of time.
Black cohosh is an herb that has been used traditionally to reduce muscle pain as well as joint pain. Black cohosh is known to play the role of an anti-spasmodic that may prove to be beneficial in reducing the pain that is associated with sciatica. In the book ‘medical herbalism: the science and practice of herbal medicine’, author and herbalist David Hoffman indicates that black cohosh plays the role of a nervine and this is why it is helpful in treating sciatica effectively.
It has been found out that this herb possesses salicylic acid, which is a chemical that is similar to the chemical named acetylsalicylic acid in aspirin. This chemical is known to possess anti-inflammatory properties that help in decreasing the inflammation at the end of the nerves, thereby reducing the pain that is associated with sciatica.
Kava is an herb that is helpful in reducing pain as well as muscle spasms by soothing and protecting the nerves. Sciatica pain is known to develop as a result of the compression of the sciatic nerve. This happens due to muscle tension. This kind of muscle tension is known as piriformis syndrome. Tension in the muscles is known to result in the compression of the sciatic nerve.
Kava is a common herb that is considered an effective muscle relaxant. This herb helps in relieving the pain and inflammation associated with this condition. According to a research study published in ‘Planta Medica’ in September 2002, it was pointed out that this herb possesses an active ingredient named kavain. This active ingredient is helpful in soothing the muscles and aiding smooth contraction of the muscles.
Basil is known to be an aromatic medicinal herb that is also used for culinary purposes. Herbalists have used the leaves of this herb extensively. This has been done to treat pain in the muscles, joints as well as headaches. The leaves of this herb possess flavonoids that have an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effect on the body.
According to a research study conducted by researchers from Punjab university in India and published in the ‘Journal of Ethno Pharmacology’, it was observed that basil extract helped in reducing the symptoms of pain as well as nerve degeneration in animals who suffered from induced sciatic nerve damage. Consult your physician regarding the correct dosage as well as safety measures.
Burdock is an herb that is considered effective in the treatment of sciatica. The Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre states that burdock is an herb that is effective in treating a host of health ailments such as arthritis, anorexia, eczema, psoriasis, cancer as well as diabetes. The root and seeds of this herb are used in medicinal preparations.
Health experts state that burdock possesses anti-inflammatory properties that may help in the treatment of inflammation and pain associated with sciatica. However, it is important to note that long-term usage of this herb can result in the occurrence of urinary tract infections. High doses of this herb are also known to result in urinary tract infections. Before you consume this herb to treat sciatica, it is highly recommended that you seek medical advice regarding the correct dosage as well as side effects.
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