I am one of those people that as soon as I have some type of pain I run to my doctor, but now with the outbreak, things are going to have to change. The healthcare system is overwhelmed and they might not even see you if it’s not a life-threatening illness or injury. But that’s what’s great about the protocol that I developed for my own situation with lower back pain and sciatica. No need for a therapist or doctor in my personal experience and research for myself. Now that’s ME personally. Please see your doctor or therapist for advice or an emergency. Telehealth is a good option amid our lot in life right now.
Remember I’m not a doctor or a therapist just someone that was in severe pain and search for 2 YEARS to resolve this pain to no avail. I had to come up with something that helped me, and that something happened to not involve any doctors at all! I did go to mainstream doctors, specialists, orthopedic surgeons, chiropractors, and even had weeks of physical therapy.
Let me explain the horrible pain that I had from my lower back and eventually all the way down the sciatic nerve to my big toe. It got so bad that I could barely walk, get in or out of the car, cook, take care of my kids, go on vacation, go to the bathroom without pain, work, or sleep. It ruled my life and my body was literally withering away. Because of no movement, my right leg began to lose muscle and the skin on my leg losing its normal color. Becoming an odd yellowish hue.
After I just painted that picture for you now, you might understand how bad it got for me. Maybe you’re there too. I invite you to read on then.
First Step – Immediately Correct Your Posture, Thanks Mom
I will show you what I did to improve my posture and keep it that way. I’ve mentioned before how important posture is. My previous sitting was atrocious, I was sitting at my desk completely humped over my keyboard. You always heard your mother say straighten upright, or am I the only one? But never were clear really about the consequences of not sitting up straight. In my research, I found that hunching over puts more stress in your lower back that, putting all the pressure on your lower back which then, in turn, brings pain and tension and perhaps even sciatica as it did for me. I also found after reading about it that over correction of appropriate posture helps keep it that way and improves your posture faster.
What I mean by that is instead of just sitting up straight, like you’re supposed to, I would pull my chest or heart forward and bottom all the way back trying to recreate that lower back curve that we might’ve lost at some point and that is now has straightened. The medical term for this is ”loss of the lumbar lordosis”. I was told by a chiropractor I had “flat back syndrome” blew him off at first. Later as I read the “Fix Your Own Back” book I recalled his remark to me but the difference was that I now understood the reason why. See my post about this book here.
I’d walk around looking like I owned the place, shoulders back and back arched. I did that as much as possible and also I did it whenever I remembered. When I was able to drive I made sure to have my body as erect as possible. In the book I mentioned before, they even recommend you sit with a pillow on your lower back, sort of a tootsie roll style pillow. He recommended this one. I actually needed up making my own from an old pillow I had, your creativity can be handy here.
Step 2 Watching What You Eat Matters- Low Carbohydrate Anti-Inflammatory Diet
Please give me a minute to explain. I know with the pain that you’re probably experiencing you can’t even think about dieting at this moment. But a few changes can make a world of difference.
Lowering your intake of carbs should be a step-by-step process. First you may want to consider lowering the intake of sugar and highly processed refined products. In these turbulent times, you would obviously have to perhaps order or pick up some canned items but be mindful about how many carbohydrates they have. For example, we picked up canned vegetables that are low sugar like green beans, peas, carrots.
When you drink your morning coffee perhaps put a teaspoon less of sugar and taper down from there. It will take some time to find an alternative that you like some people use Splenda which is sucralose, some people use Stevia. Stevia may be a little harder to get used to but if you find the Stevia that you like that will be the greatest option and healthiest. Stevia I wouldn’t say it’s an acquired taste but every different brand taste different to me. So you may have to buy a few to find the one that you like. I prefer Pyure, this is a mix of Stevia and erythritol which to me this makes is perfect. We make cakes, cupcakes, ice cream, and of course our morning coffee. If you take it one meal at a time swapping out the sugar for Stevia that will give you a good start.
Pyure Stevia link on Amazon.
This is what I read on the Healthline.com website amongst other things about an anti-inflammatory diet: “Inflammation is a protective mechanism that allows your body to defend itself against infection, illness, or injury. It can also occur on a chronic basis, which can lead to various diseases.”
I found by following a low carb diet in the early part of my sciatic pain helped quite a lot. How do I know? Every time I would give up and eat “whatever” the next day I would pay for it with heightened pain, that’s not a coincidence. Before my bad sciatic issues, I had lost about 30 pounds of weight, although I did gain some weight back when I became disabled with pain when my sciatic got worst I still saw a difference. I believe I gained weight because at this point I could not move at all. I gain about 10 pounds or so.
In my next article, I will discuss the easy low carb meals I made while in recovery.
Bless you all, Sandy