Lumbago with sciatica pain refers to a condition that involves lower back pain (lumbago) accompanied by sciatic nerve irritation. Lumbago itself is a term used to describe lower back pain. It is often characterized by discomfort, stiffness, or soreness in the lumbar region of the spine.
The sciatic nerve is the longest in the human body, running from the lower back down through the buttocks and extending to the legs. When this nerve gets compressed or irritated, it can cause a specific type of pain known as sciatica. Sciatica pain typically radiates from the lower back down through the buttocks and into one or both legs. It can range from mild to severe and might be accompanied by tingling, numbness, or weakness in the affected leg.
Why do we see this problem, what caused it and how could it be fixed? Could it be related to my work style and due to my low activity? The simple answer is – YES! Due to an unhealthy workstyle, lumbago and other problems could occur! Let’s see how and why:
Lumbago with sciatica pain can result from various conditions such as:
A sedentary lifestyle and prolonged periods of sitting, especially with poor posture. This contributes significantly to lower back pain and potentially leads to conditions like lumbago or exacerbated sciatica pain.
When you spend long hours sitting at a desk without adequate movement or proper ergonomic support. It will strain the muscles, ligaments, and discs in your lower back. This can result in stiffness, reduced flexibility, and muscle imbalances, all of which can contribute to lower back pain.
Factors that might contribute to back pain due to a desk job or poor workstyle include:
- Sitting posture: Slouching, hunching over the desk, or sitting in an uncomfortable position for extended periods can strain your spine and contribute to back pain.
- Lack of movement: Remaining stationary for long hours without breaks or stretching can lead to muscle stiffness and decreased blood flow to the muscles.
- Improper ergonomics: Incorrect desk or chair height, inadequate lumbar support, or poorly positioned computer screens can strain your back and contribute to discomfort.
- Repetitive Movements: Certain occupations involve repetitive motions, such as lifting, twisting, or bending, which can strain the muscles and ligaments of the lower back over time. For instance, jobs that involve frequent heavy lifting without proper techniques or prolonged bending can contribute to back pain.
- Heavy Lifting: Jobs that require frequent or improper heavy lifting without using proper lifting techniques can put excessive strain on the lower back muscles, leading to injury or pain.
- Vibration Exposure: Workers who operate heavy machinery or tools that produce vibrations may experience increased stress on the spine, potentially contributing to back pain over time.
- Psychosocial Factors: Work-related stress, high job demands, lack of control over tasks, or job dissatisfaction can contribute to muscle tension and increased susceptibility to back pain.
- Sedentary Work Environments: Jobs that primarily involve sitting for extended periods, such as office work, driving, or operating machinery, can lead to weakened core muscles and decreased flexibility, both of which can contribute to lumbago.
- Work Environment: Extreme temperatures, uncomfortable workspaces, or prolonged standing on hard surfaces without proper footwear or anti-fatigue mats can strain the back muscles and lead to discomfort.
- Incorrect Use of Equipment: Using tools or equipment incorrectly, such as heavy lifting without proper support, improper use of office chairs, or poorly adjusted workstations, can contribute to back pain.
- Work Stress and Fatigue: High-stress work environments or jobs that require long hours and inadequate rest can lead to fatigue and muscle tension, exacerbating back pain.
As you can see, the reasons are not only if you are sitting all day, but some specific jobs and work environments are more likely to cause lumbago with sciatica pain. Driving for long hours every day to work and home… Even while working out at the gym, if you don’t have proper technique, you could damage yourself. I strongly encourage people who work all day sting to avoid lifting heavy at the gym with sitting positions, stick to laying (benchpress) or standing (make sure you keep your spine straight and use comfortable weights for your back!
Habits that will help you fix lumbago with sciatica pain
Lumbago isn’t something that should stay in your life. By implementing little habits and making small adjustments to your schedule, you can see a dramatic difference! Here are some examples of what you could do better:
- Optimal Sitting Posture: Maintain proper posture while sitting by keeping your back straight, shoulders relaxed, and feet flat on the floor. Use a chair that supports the natural curve of your spine and consider a lumbar support cushion if needed.
- Movement and Breaks: Take regular breaks from prolonged sitting to stand up, stretch, and move around. Incorporate brief walks, stretches, or changes in position every hour to prevent muscle stiffness and improve blood flow.
- Ergonomic Workspace: Adjust your desk, chair, and computer setup ergonomically. Ensure your screen is at eye level, your keyboard and mouse are positioned comfortably, and your chair provides adequate lumbar support.
- Proper Lifting Techniques: If your job involves lifting heavy objects, use proper lifting techniques to protect your back. Bend your knees, keep your back straight, and lift with your legs instead of your back.
- Core Strengthening and Flexibility Exercises: Engage in exercises that strengthen core muscles and improve flexibility. Incorporate stretching, yoga, or exercises targeting the abdominal and back muscles to support your spine better.
- Avoid Repetitive Movements: Be mindful of repetitive movements that strain the lower back. Modify work routines or use ergonomic aids to reduce repetitive stress on your back muscles.
- Address Psychosocial Factors: Manage work-related stress by practicing stress-reduction techniques, maintaining a healthy work-life balance, and seeking support or counseling if needed.
- Proper Equipment Use: Use tools and equipment correctly, ensuring they are adjusted to your body and task requirements. Invest in ergonomic furniture, lifting aids, or supportive footwear to minimize strain on your back.
- Stay Active and Hydrated: Incorporate regular physical activity into your routine to strengthen muscles and improve overall health. Stay hydrated to maintain the health of your spinal discs.
- Massage Therapy: Going to a massage that is focused on the lower back. That way you can strengthen your back muscles and relax them, making them feel more natural!
- Seek Professional Advice: If experiencing persistent or severe back pain, consult a healthcare professional for a personalized assessment and guidance on managing and preventing lumbago associated with work.
As you can see staying healthy overall and taking care of your body are the keys to keeping lumbago away! However, if you wanna see faster recovery results and make sure you are feeling better sooner… Doing exercises and/or getting a tool to help you stay healthy is very beneficial!
Exercies to fix lumbago:
Have no idea what kind of exercise to do? Those exercises will strengthen the core muscles, improve flexibility, and alleviate lower back pain associated with a desk job. Fixing lumbago with sciatica pain is much faster if you do the following:
- Partial Crunches: Lie on your back with your knees bent and hands behind your head. Lift your shoulders off the floor by contracting your abdominal muscles while keeping your lower back on the ground. Hold briefly, then slowly lower back down. Repeat 10-15 times.
- Bird Dog: Start on your hands and knees, keeping your back straight. Extend your right arm forward and your left leg backward, keeping them parallel to the floor. Hold for a few seconds, then return to the starting position and switch sides. Repeat 10 times on each side.
- Cat-Cow Stretch: Get on your hands and knees. Arch your back upward like a cat, tucking your chin to your chest (cat position). Then, slowly move into an arched position, dropping your belly towards the floor and lifting your head and tailbone upwards (cow position). Repeat this movement 10-15 times.
- Pelvic Tilts: Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Tighten your abdominal muscles and press your lower back into the floor. Hold for a few seconds, then release. Repeat 10-15 times.
- Hamstring Stretch: While seated, extend one leg out with the other foot against the inner thigh. Lean forward from your hips, reaching towards your toes. Hold the stretch for 20-30 seconds and then switch sides. Repeat 2-3 times on each leg.
- Hip Flexor Stretch: Kneel on one knee with the other foot in front, keeping your knee bent at a 90-degree angle. Lean forward slightly while keeping your back straight until you feel a gentle stretch in the front of your hip. Hold for 20-30 seconds and switch sides. Repeat 2-3 times on each side.
- Bridge Exercise: Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Lift your hips off the floor until your body forms a straight line from shoulders to knees. Hold for a few seconds, then slowly lower back down. Repeat 10-15 times.
It’s crucial to listen to your body and not push into any position that causes pain. These exercises aim to strengthen muscles and improve flexibility. If you experience discomfort, stop the exercise and consult a healthcare professional for guidance tailored to your specific condition. Doing regular practice of these exercises, along with maintaining good posture and taking breaks from prolonged sitting! This helps alleviate and prevent lumbago pain.
If this isn’t enough for you, here are some products and tools that will surely help you as well:
Ideas of products that could help you, with lumbago during your work!
There are several products and ergonomic aids designed to help alleviate lower back pain. Those tools will also promote better posture while working at a desk. Here are some options:
- Ergonomic Chair: Invest in a chair with proper lumbar support that helps maintain the natural curve of your spine. Look for adjustable features like seat height, armrests, and tilt to customize it to your needs.
- Lumbar Support Cushion: If your chair lacks adequate lumbar support, consider using a separate cushion. It should be designed to support the lower back while sitting. These cushions can help maintain the proper alignment of the spine.
- Standing Desk or Converter: Alternating between sitting and standing throughout the workday can reduce the strain on your back. Consider a height-adjustable standing desk or a converter that can convert your regular desk into a standing desk.
- Footrest: A footrest can help maintain proper posture by supporting your feet while sitting. It can also aid in reducing pressure on your lower back and legs.
- Monitor Stand or Arm: Position your computer monitor at eye level to prevent neck strain. A monitor stand or adjustable monitor arm can help achieve the correct height and angle.
- Keyboard and Mouse Tray: An ergonomic keyboard and mouse tray that can be adjusted to the right height and angle. Those tools will help reduce strain on your wrists and arms, which can indirectly affect your posture.
- Anti-Fatigue Mat: If you use a standing desk, an anti-fatigue mat can provide cushioning and support for your feet, reducing discomfort and fatigue.
- Exercise Ball Chair: Some people find sitting on an exercise ball (also known as a stability ball) rather than a traditional chair can help improve posture and engage core muscles. However, it’s important to use it properly and comfortably.
- Posture Correctors: Wearable devices, such as posture correctors or braces, are designed to promote better posture by gently reminding you to sit or stand upright.
Before purchasing any products, consider your specific needs, preferences, and the severity of your back pain. It might also be helpful to consult with an ergonomic specialist or healthcare professional. That way you can find the most suitable products or modifications for your workspace and condition. Combining these products with regular movement, stretching, and ergonomic adjustments can significantly reduce lower back pain associated with a desk job.
Lumbago with sciatica pain can be a challenging condition characterized by lower back discomfort (lumbago) accompanied by irritation or compression of the sciatic nerve. This can lead to radiating pain, tingling, numbness, or weakness extending from the lower back through the buttocks and down one or both legs.
Common causes include herniated discs, degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis, or muscle injuries affecting the sciatic nerve. A sedentary lifestyle, poor posture, and prolonged sitting can contribute to or exacerbate this condition.
- Medical Consultation: Seek advice from a healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and a tailored treatment plan based on the underlying cause and severity of your condition.
- Conservative Treatments: These may include rest, medication (such as NSAIDs or muscle relaxants), physical therapy, heat or ice therapy, and exercises aimed at strengthening core muscles and improving flexibility.
- Ergonomic Adjustments: Modify your workspace to support better posture, use ergonomic furniture, take regular breaks, and incorporate movement throughout your workday to alleviate strain on your back.
- Lifestyle Changes: Engage in regular exercise, maintain a healthy weight, stay hydrated, and practice stress management techniques to reduce tension and strain on the back muscles.
- Surgical Options: In severe cases or when conservative treatments fail to provide relief, surgical intervention may be considered to address specific structural issues contributing to the condition.
Consistency and a combination of these strategies are essential in managing lumbago with sciatica pain. While some measures can provide immediate relief, others contribute to long-term improvements in managing and preventing further episodes of pain. Tailoring these approaches to your specific needs, guided by healthcare professionals, can lead to better management and an improved quality of life despite this challenging condition.