Sciatica pain is not just a signal that we are injured, it is often a signal from our brain that we need to change things up. But what do we change? What needs to get implemented in order to get relief? There is a common saying that “we learn from our mistakes”. Each of this instances is an opportunity to learn and develop an actionable plan to allow for success and to avoid the mistake in the future. Here are the 3 common mistakes busy adults make with sciatica pain.
- Rest and do nothing. The body craves movement. You may notice that when you ‘rest’ and do nothing, your symptoms may feel a little better, but with the tradeoff of being generally stiff, sore, and cranky because there was little to no movement. Interestingly enough, the average American does not meet the general activity guideline of 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity, and 2 days of muscle strengthening activity. The majority of our hours are spent sitting or standing still. But if you are in pain, how can you move safely? I encourage you to look back into your day and identify which activities bring you the most relief or don’t irritate your pain. This will dictate a lot of the stretches and exercises that can help you recover.
- Going through every exercise/stretch in the book. One fast way to get confused, possibly increase your pain, and slow down recovery is to go through one of the lengthy exercise/stretching programs that is found on the internet. Hear me out. You will find some really great programs out there, I’m a huge fan of them. However, without reassessing how you feel after EACH exercise/stretch, the ability to find the right activities will be hard. Some will make you feel great, and some will make you feel not so great. So it is important to go through exercises one at a time and evaluate its effectiveness in your recovery.
- Giving up hope. After experiencing little to no relief over a period of time, it can be really easy to give up hope and to say goodbye to a life without pain. The great news is that you can in fact recover. Pain is a signal used to protect us. If you’ve been experiencing pain for 12 weeks or more, your brain has probably developed a habit of living with pain. It is time for you to reframe how you perceive this pain. Perhaps even changing the way you describe your pain can help. Example: instead of “ouch this hurts” try out “well this is unpleasant”. Something like this example can help you reframe how you see your pain and make it less intense. Again, there is hope for recovery and just reading this is taking you one step in the right direction.
Remember, every mistake is a learning opportunity, if you open up your heart and mind to it. The great news is that you don’t have to go through this alone! There are many clinicians out there that can help you. If you need help finding one in person to serve you, reply to this email and we can do that together.
If you want to work with us directly, you can book your free strategy call here.
If you want some help, but don’t have the time to meet with someone regularly, try out our Sciatica Protocol. It will provide a customized stretching/movement program for you all through text message. It takes as little as 10 minutes per day. You can check it out here.