Q&A on Sciatica with Senior Physiotherapist, Helen Cottingham

World Class Treatment

Q&A on Sciatica with Senior Physiotherapist, Helen Cottingham

Senior Physiotherapist, Helen Cottingham BSc (Hons) MCSP SRP

What is sciatica? 

The sciatic nerve is a nerve which runs from your lower back down, down your leg and into the foot. Sciatica is where the nerve has become irritated or compressed. Depending on severity, sciatica can take up to eight weeks to settle down.  

What are the signs/symptoms? 

You often experience pain in the lower back, the glutes or the back of the leg down to the toes. If severe, you may also experience tingling numbness or weakness. In the majority of cases, sciatica can last for 8 weeks but may potentially last longer. 

What makes it worse? 

Prolonged sitting can often really aggravate the pain as this will load onto the lower back and sciatic nerve. 

Anything I can do to prevent? 

Keeping your spine flexible and strong can help reduce the likelihood of developing sciatica. If you have a desk-based job, we recommend looking at your desk set up to improve posture and taking regular breaks if you sit for long periods of time.  

What can I do to help pain? 

Taking pain relief is one way to help you manage your symptoms; either over the counter medication or your GP may potentially prescribe something.  

Long term, physiotherapy can really help improve your spinal function and mobility of the nerve. Our physiotherapists will assess your mobility and work with you to develop an exercise programme to help improve the condition. If you have recurrent issues this can take several treatment sessions to help give you relief.  

Contact us on 01904 413669 or email info@yorkshiresportsmedicine.co.uk if you would like to book in with one of our senior physiotherapists. 


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