As we reach older age or maturity should I say, we are more susceptible to injuries. Not just of the sporting variety, but in general as well. With the steady and inevitable decline of the human body during the late thirties, there’s a high chance that you may have to deal with some kind of injury and there is a chance you may have to do battle against the Sciatic nerve. With up to 40% of people getting it at some point in their lifetime, it’s something most of us will have to combat.
Even though medicine is ever advancing, people are always looking for alternative ways, either natural or holistic to help sooth the pain after regular methods fail. One thing people are turning to is the use of CBD for sciatica as an alternative to regular pain relief with positive results.
What Is This Pain?
So what exactly is sciatica and what’s the big deal? I’m talking from experience here, as I used to suffer from this and without a doubt it’s one of thee…if not thee most painful injury I have had.
Sciatica is when the sciatic nerve, which runs from your hips to your feet, is irritated. This is caused by either the pulling of a muscle in the buttocks (which was what I had) or even a bulged disc in the lower back which can rub or push on the nerve. When this happens you will feel like you have been electrocuted with a bolt of lightening from Zeus himself, the pain is so great you may encounter total paralysis and loss of breath (I did). The NHS website states that it usually gets better in 4 to 6 weeks but can last longer. If you only have it for 4 to 6 weeks then you have been let off very lightly, as i’ve not known anyone to shake it that fast…EVER!
Symptoms Of Doom
There are a few ways of knowing you have sciatica and some symptoms are as follows:
Severe discomfort In your bottom – I would say this is putting it mildly, the pain is so severe that you won’t even be able to lay in bed without biting down on your pillow begging for mercy.
Backs of your legs – this will feel like someone has stabbed you with a sharp blade or even placed a red-hot iron on your skin especially between the buttocks and back of the knees.
Feet and toes – the most common symptom here is by getting a tingling sensation in your toes and under your feet. With pins and needles being very common here and you may on occasion walk like a baby giraffe when losing feeling in your feet with periods of numbness.
One thing is for certain is that your symptoms may get worse when you move, sneeze, cough or back flip (the last one is a joke).
You may also get lower back pain, but this is not normally as bad as the pain in your bottom, legs or feet.
If you do have any of these symptoms then please go see your GP and see what they can do for you.
What Is The Endocannabinoid System?
The GP however, won’t recommend CBD, but people are looking to it as an alternative way of reducing the chronic pain they feel from sciatica.
The introduction of CBD for this can help reduce inflammation in the body and rapidly reduce the pain you feel from the symptoms mentioned. Taking CBD triggers your natural endocannabinoid system (ECS) through the C1 and C2 receptors.
C1 receptors are found in the nervous system, organs and connective tissues. While C2 receptors are found in the immune system, bones, blood vessels endocrine glands and reproductive organs.
The cannabinoids that are produced are not only crucial but work with these receptors to regulate the body’s various systems. They can have a wide range of effects including changes to the immune system, pain response, blood pressure, body temperature, PH levels and inflammation amongst others.
The ECS is very important in regulating the body’s balance and at times can get thrown out of whack with stress, lifestyle, changes in diet and lack of exercise. This is where the use of CBD can be of great help to ease the pain first and foremost with a steady physiotherapy routine that will be key to regaining your fitness and well-being.
Road To Recovery
You will be lucky not to need physiotherapy with sciatica as the majority of people will. I know that this injury can have a serious impact on your life, as the pain can be depressing as it’s so intense and it’s a real struggle to see it ever getting better at any point. I asked for physiotherapy but the doctor declined, so I had to figure this out myself, as stuffing me full of pain pills wasn’t the answer I was looking for.
With consistency, dedication and repetition you can beat sciatica with regular sports massage (these were the biggest factor for me) that will push you close to the edge with how painful it gets, but stay focused and think about how you are going to beat it. If you can’t get massages I would recommend a deep tissue massager to soften the muscle round the area in question.
If you can move and have enough mobility, I would also suggest yoga classes. This was a massive factor for me in beating sciatica. Remember to never push yourself too hard as you could make the problem worse, just use it to increase mobility and loosen the area.
Regular use of ice packs to reduce inflammation and hot water bottles to increase blood flow will help with the pain bit by bit. With the addition of CDB into your recovery program, it could help speed up recovery time considerably if used with some or all mentioned here.
Make sure that whatever you do, you keep as mobile as possible and never push any stretch or movement too far. Be aware that it may take months to begin to feel human again battling through this, but it’s well worth sticking to it as living with sciatica is one of the most painful things anyone will encounter. If you have experienced Sciatica or know someone that has, please leave a comment below.
DISCLAIMER – always seek the advice of a GP and take precautions before attempting any exercise or change to diet.