How Your Weight Affects Your Sciatica Pain

Whether you have a herniated disc, a bone spur, or spinal stenosis, you likely feel it in the form of sciatica — that sharp, shooting, excruciating pain that starts in your lower back and travels down the length of your leg. Being overweight or obese doesn’t actually cause sciatica, but it sure makes the pain worse.

At Apollo Pain Management, we can help you manage your sciatica symptoms and, in many cases, relieve them permanently. Whether medication is the right plan for you or an epidural steroid injection is better suited, your treatment will be much more effective if you lose weight. Here’s why.

Extra eight means extra pressure and pain

Regardless of what’s causing your sciatica, the common denominator is compressed nerves. If your spinal condition is clamping down on your sciatic nerve, you feel a burning, radiating pain through your buttocks and down your leg. 

The more you weigh, the more pressure is placed on all your body parts, including your spine. In fact, your joints and spine are subjected to four additional pounds of force for every extra pound of weight you carry. That means your sciatic nerve doesn’t stand a chance, and your nerve pain will be difficult to alleviate.

Extra weight means limited ability to exercise

When you’re overweight, you’re less likely to get out and exercise. In a vicious cycle, your sedentary lifestyle causes you to gain weight, and your excess weight causes you to stay sedentary. 

But if you have sciatica, exercise is one of the key components in your treatment plan. At Apollo Pain Management, we stress a holistic approach to healing that engages your entire body. While we have treatments to help you heal from the root cause of your pain, your own body possesses the amazing ability to help itself — but when you’re carrying too much weight, your body can’t function at peak performance.

Losing weight can alleviate sciatica pain

In addition to relieving some of the pressure on your muscles, joints, nerves, and spine, losing weight has a positive effect on your overall health, which allows your body to heal properly.

Some of the sciatica-related benefits of losing weight, especially through exercise, include:

Losing weight decreases your chances of reinjury

Once you’ve had a herniated disc, bone spur, or spinal stenosis, your compromised anatomy needs all the help it can get to prevent a recurrence. The stronger your supporting anatomy is, the better your chances of avoiding a relapse. 

When you’re ready to give your back a break and lose the excess weight, come see us at Apollo Pain Management to get started. We are with you every step of the way as you work toward a healthier, pain-free life. Call us to make an appointment or book one online.

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