Sciatica Pain Relief: An East Greenwich RI
Chiropractor’s Perspective

our chiropractic clinic helps sciatica pain

As a chiropractor in East Greenwich RI, we see patients with sciatica on a daily basis. This common condition is pain running down either or both legs at any time. Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve becomes compressed and irritated. It is typically very painful because the sciatica nerve is one of the largest nerves in the body and can be as thick as the width of your thumb. In fact, the sciatic nerve is actually composed of five different spinal nerves that travel down the leg together. These nerves split into many branches that travel all the way down to the toes. Together, they control all functions of the thighs, legs, and feet.

Sciatica can present in varying ways, but the common features include pain, numbness and tingling, and even weakness in the buttocks, thigh, and lower leg. This condition is so prevalent because its risk factors are so common, like sitting for extended periods (i.e., at a desk), obesity and diabetes, and excessive bending and lifting activities. Sciatica can be extremely debilitating, affecting work, social, and family relationships.

Like many conditions, sciatica can fall into the acute or chronic category. In an acute injury, perhaps after lifting an object or bending and twisting, the spinal discs can bulge or herniate and place pressure on the nerve. Additionally, muscle strain in the piriformis muscle can increase tension and inflammation and irritate the nerve. In the case of a chronic condition, often, someone has been so used to the problem that it becomes their “new normal.” Chronic sciatica can be more difficult to treat, as the longer the condition is present, the longer it takes to heal. This is why getting checked out as early as possible is so important. Whether it is acute or chronic, chiropractic effectively treats sciatica to get you back to the life you want.

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How We Treat Sciatica in East Greenwich RI

Comprehensive Consultation and Exam
At Greenwich Bay Chiropractic, new patients will always start with a careful consultation. During the consultation, we will review your history and mechanism of injury to help determine the cause of sciatica, be it disc, muscle, or spine related.

To confirm our diagnosis, we always follow with a comprehensive exam, where we perform orthopedic, neurological, and chiropractic functional tests to determine the degree and severity of the sciatica. By understanding the origin, we can develop customized and effective treatment solutions.

Specific Chiropractic Care in East Greenwich, RI
When the vertebrae or bones of the spine are misaligned and dysfunctional, chiropractors can realign the vertebra to take the pressure off the sciatic nerve. These spinal misalignments are called subluxations and can be quite painful. By removing these misalignments, we can create a healing environment in the body that uses the body’s own power to heal the nerve from the inside out. It is important to note that nerves heal as fast as hair and nails grow, so this condition may take some time to resolve. Even if it does take a little more time, the prognosis is still favorable.

Spinal Decompression
We always say that spinal decompression “supercharges” your chiropractic care. This innovative therapy will decompress and open the disc spaces of the spine. When the underlying cause of sciatica is disc-related, decompression creates a negative pressure in the disc to centralize it or move it back to the middle of the spine. When the disc is centralized, it moves away from the nerve that it is compressing and irritating, giving the body the chance to heal.

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Customized Therapeutic Exercise Program
Stability and mobility are two very important factors that create resilience in the spine. At Greenwich Bay Chiropractic, we will customize a program to help target the muscles that may be affecting your sciatica. We conveniently use an online portal with tutorials that walk you through how to do everything and can be accessed from anywhere in the world. We want to ensure that we are strengthening the muscles in the specific area to help protect it from future injury and bolster the work we are doing in the office.
Common Causes of Sciatica in East Greenwich, RI

Herniated Lumbar Discs
One of the most common causes of sciatica is a bulged or herniated disc. The disc is the cartilage cushion made up of rings of fibrocartilage on the outside and soft cartilage on the inside. When the outside rings break, they can cause the disc to bulge or herniate. This, in turn, pushes on the nerves that exit the spine and control the entire lower leg.

Herniated discs can be a serious condition and cause immense pain in the lower back and the leg. This condition can be so debilitating that it affects many aspects of everyday life. It is important to get this condition assessed and treated early, as the longer it persists, the more time it will take to heal and, in more serious cases, can even cause long-term damage.

Degenerative Disc Disease
Our discs naturally get smaller, lose height, and weaken as we age. However, this process can be accelerated by lifestyle factors such as heavy physical labor, smoking, and obesity. When the disc degenerates, bone spurs can form, and this additional bone and loss of space can crowd the hole or foramen where the nerve exits. If we think of the disc as a spacer for the nerve, the less disc space, the more easily the nerve can become compressed.

Degenerative disc disease cannot be reversed. However, slowing the process and introducing better spine function can dramatically increase your quality of life. Even with this physical, structural change, it is still possible to achieve a good result naturally.

Muscle Strain or Spasm
The most important muscle that relates to sciatica is the piriformis muscle. The piriformis muscle is located in your buttock region and is the most important because the sciatica nerve runs underneath it. When the muscle is strained or in spasm, it can directly place pressure on the sciatic nerve and cause pain all the way down the leg. This is why it is so important to determine the cause of sciatica because, in this case, we must also focus on stretches and exercise to lengthen the muscle and relieve tension.

In many cases, muscle strain can affect spinal alignment and may be a symptom of a much more serious spinal cause. Many low back and pelvis muscles attach directly to the spine and can cause misalignments that place pressure on the nerves. Using specific chiropractic techniques and a customized exercise program, we can get you back to living life to the fullest.

One of the most common causes of sciatica that chiropractors treat is subluxation. Subluxation occurs when a vertebra in your spine shifts or moves out of its normal position. When this happens in your lower back, it can put pressure on the nerves that make up the sciatic nerve and cause intense leg pain, burning, numbness, and weakness. Chiropractors are trained to find these misalignments in the spine, remove them, and allow your body to function and heal normally over time.

At Greenwich Bay Chiropractic, we always take a multifaceted approach that includes chiropractic, exercise, and decompression to help heal sciatica as effectively as possible. We also have great relationships with physical and massage therapists that can aid in optimal results. Our multidimensional approach sets you up for the best chance of success!

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I see a doctor or a chiropractor about sciatica?

While seeing a doctor as soon as possible is a step in the right direction, chiropractors are the best conservative approach to sciatica pain relief and should be seen as the first option rather than the last resort.

What can I do to relieve my sciatica in East Greenwich RI?

Simple stretches and rest can temporarily relieve sciatica. However, the best option is to be evaluated by a chiropractor at Greenwich Bay Chiropractic so that the problem is addressed before it gets any worse.

What is the best treatment for sciatica?

Chiropractic is a fantastic treatment for sciatica. Chiropractors are trained to address the numerous causes of sciatica by correcting the problem at the root cause.

How should I lay with sciatica?

While finding the most comfortable position for you is the best choice, avoiding laying in positions that increase tension on the sciatic nerve is your best bet. We recommend lying on your back with your knees bent and pillows under your knees to support proper spinal structure.

Can stretching make sciatica worse?

In some cases, the wrong stretches or doing stretches improperly can create more tension on the sciatic nerve. It is important to see a professional so you do not do more harm than good.


9:00am - 12:00pm
3:00pm - 6:00pm

9:00am - 12:00pm
3:00pm - 6:00pm

9:00am - 12:00pm
3:00pm - 6:00pm

9:00am - 12:00pm
3:00pm - 6:00pm


Saturday & Sunday

Greenwich Bay Chiropractic

16 Main Street
East Greenwich, RI 02818
Phone: (401) 408-4430
Fax: (401) 443-8818