Sciatic Nerve Pain (Sciatica)
The Sciatic nerve is a large nerve that runs from the lower spine, through the buttocks, into the back of the thigh, down through your leg and into the foot (you have 1 on each side). The sciatic nerve provides motor and sensory input to the legs; it provides sensation to the back of the thigh, lower leg, and the sole of your foot.
The sciatic nerve can be affected during pregnancy since it runs under your uterus as it goes to your legs. The pressure from the growing uterus and developing baby can compress the nerve and cause sharp pain, tingling, burning, numbness, or electric-like pain. The pain usually starts in the low back or buttocks (depending where the nerve is compressed) and radiated into the back of the thigh and lower leg/ foot. Sciatic nerve pain is usually one sided.
Sciatic nerve pain is usually worse when standing or sitting still (adding increased compression over time) and feels better when walking or lying on the side opposite of the one in pain
Sciatic Nerve Pain can be treated several ways:
-Warmth to the painful side (shower or warming pad)
-Walking around to avoid standing still for long periods of time
-Laying down on the opposite side
-Physical Therapy for manual techniques to relieve pressure on the nerve
-Exercise and stretching
Expand for Pictures and Instructions to address Sciatica Pain
Elina Skripochnik PT, DPT, CSCS
Elina is a Physical Therapist with experience in women's health and pediatrics. She aims to educate women on the importance of becoming and staying active during pregnancy, as well as to provide safe and easy exercises that can be done throughout pregnancy and beyond.