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3 Methods for Coping with Chronic Sciatica

When you're limited or disabled by chronic sciatica, it's easy to lose hope from the severity of pain.

At Pain Specialty Group, our board-certified and expert pain management specialists understands how debilitating chronic sciatica can be.

Learn more about chronic sciatica and three different methods for finding relief from chronic sicatica pain. 

3 Methods for Coping with Chronic Sciatica

Sciatica pain is a catch-all term for feeling discomfort that starts from your lower back and runs down to one or both of your legs. The pain does not have to radiate through your whole leg to classify as sciatica, it can localize (often with higher intensity) at places like the foot, calf, or hamstring. Sometimes the symptoms can occur in multiple locations at once. When sciatica is chronic, the pain does not go away over time and is usually severe enough to cause a crippling level of discomfort. There are no single treatments for chronic sciatica that work for everyone, but the following three techniques can help you manage symptoms before speaking with a pain doctor.

Determine Causes Through Biofeedback

Biofeedback is a non-drug treatment in which patients learn to control bodily processes that are normally involuntary, such as muscle tension. During biofeedback doctors place electrodes on the skin around the area of the muscle that may need treatment. The electrical activity present under the skin is measured and then a computer records how much tension is present within the tissue. The therapist views the measurements on the monitor, and, through trial and error, identifies a range of mental activities and relaxation techniques that can help regulate the patient’s bodily processes. Eventually, patients learn how to control these processes without the need for monitoring.


It is possible to find temporary relief from chronic sciatica using a mental exercise called dissociation. Through dissociation, one imagines that the central point of pain detaches from the body itself. For example, if there is a patient who has chronic pain around his/her foot the patient can imagine that their foot stays in the same place while the rest of their body moves away, or that their foot is on the other side of the room. Dissociation requires some practice, and it often helps to stay in a quiet, secluded area with little distraction to maintain focus during early attempts.

Engage in your Favorite Hobbies

Time flies when you’re having fun, and pain can work the same way. It may sound a little too simple, but staying engaged with your favorite activities can help reduce your awareness of chronic pain. If your favorite activities consist of running marathons or biking up hills, you may have to look for something new – like yoga, swimming, or cooking. More than anything, continuing to have hobbies keeps you active and helps you prevent depression, which can lead to increased perceptions of pain.

While you learn how to approach your chronic sciatica pain, you should also take time to understand the underlying cause of the discomfort. Pain can be more than just annoying, it may signal a serious underlying medical problem. Pain Specialty Group has helped patients throughout New Hampshire, Maine and Massachusetts diagnose, reduce and treat their chronic pain.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our experts.  To schedule an appointment, please contact us here.

We at Pain Specialty Group, are always here to help you in any way we can.

Pain Specialty Group Specializing In You

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