Sciatica pain usually occurs on one side when your sciatic nerve is stretched or pinched.
You may experience a mild tingling sensation that sometimes becomes very severe. Many a time, you get sharp pains in one part of the leg or hip and numbness in other parts. When pain worsens it leads to immobility.
Damage to the Sciatica nerve may be caused through strenuous activities such as lifting weights or over-exposure to bitter chilly winds.
Common Causes of Sciatica
- Any pressure on the sciatic nerve
- Any disease that causes irritation of nerves
- General wear and tear of the sciatic nerve, or the muscles supporting the sciatic nerve due to old age.
Ayurvedic Herbs for Sciatica
According to Ayurveda, Sciatica is usually caused by an increase or aggravation of “vata dosha”. Following herbs are used for pain management:
- Nirgundi (Vitex negundo) – is an effective herb for pacifying vata nerves and joints. It has been used since a long time to reduce inflammation and swelling of joints. Nirgundi decoction is used for steam bath for arthritis, joint pains and sciatica. It is particularly very effective in alleviating back pain.
- Guggulu (Commiphora wightii) – Known as one of the oldest remedies, this herb is the best treatment for lower back pain. It nourishes the muscles and tissues of the back naturally. It provides strength and support to the bones and muscles.
- Eranda roots (Ricinus communis) – this herb is useful in all painful conditions including rheumatoid arthritis, osteo arthritis, and severe joint pains and also for gynecological disorders. A decoction of the root and root bark is used to treat sciatica. Eranda skheera paka is a medicine prepared with seeds of eranda and is processed in milk. This can be taken under physician’s advice for pain relief.
- Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) – by infusing it in sesame oil, Ashwagandha must be rubbed onto painful arthritic joints and frozen shoulders. It is effective in easing nerve pain such as sciatica, numbness, muscle spasm and back pain. The herb’s root contains steroidal properties which can be effective in treating inflammation. It is known to remove the vata symptoms that are the initiate the pain.
- Long Pepper (Piper longum) – Seeds of this herb must be boiled in water and the liquid should be strained. This mixed with powdered camphor and ground ginger should be applied over the affected areas to help relieve the pain.
- Jaiphal (Nutmeg/ Myristica fragrans) – this is a kapha and vata dosha suppressant herb. Jaiphal should be coarsely powdered and then fried in sesame oil until it turns brown. Massage this oil gently over the affected parts to get relief from neuralgia, rheumatism and sciatica.
These herbs serve as alternative home treatment options for sciatica pain. However, you may check with your doctor if these herbs are safe for you.