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newbie sciatica sufferer

PostPosted: Wed Jan 11, 2006 10:38 am
by spursgirl
:P Hi everyone! Though I'd introduce myself. I'm Lisa from Essex in England & I found this website yesterday. I've suffered on & off with sciatica for a couple of years but never prolonged pain like I have now. I've been off work for 10 weeks so far because I can't sit, unless it's in a comfy sofa or armchair! My employer has got me a special chair but it will be no good to me until I feel much better. Doctors are useless, one even sent me for an xray - as if that's gonna help?!! :roll: I've downloaded Dean's book & have started the basic exercises. I am so so hoping this will work for me as I am so desperate to get back to a normal life - being at home all the time is so boring - I can't even go anywhere in the car coz that hurts the most. Unlike a lot of sufferers, I only have lower back pain - I can bend, stretch, exercise & get around fine (thankfully).

Just one question at this stage: I have only been doing the basic exercises for a day & the pain in my lower back is worse than it was before I started. Is this normal?

Lisa xx

PostPosted: Wed Jan 11, 2006 12:56 pm
by randolph
Hi Lisa xx!

So glad you found this site and Dean's wonderful rebuilding your back program. The program has been an unqualified blessing for many of us, and certainly for me.

My first, and perhaps wrong, impression from your report that you have more pain after the first day of doing the exercises ... is that you did too much. Maybe stretched too far, maybe too many reps ... you'll just have to monitor the pain closer as you do the exercises. (I'm assuming the beginning exercises, right?) It took me several weeks of trial and error to finally get a handle on how much was too much and how little was not enough. Thankfully, there don't seem to be any long-term effects to making those exploratory mistakes, (though it does hurt some the next day). It's amazing how we learn in response to the pain that comes from not doing it right!

Good luck :D

Take it easy...

PostPosted: Wed Jan 11, 2006 1:26 pm
by krd
Hey Lisa

I too have suffered this year with sciatica. It took me 3 months till I could even begin doing Dean's beginning exercises. All I could do was walk and sometimes that was hard. When I was virtually pain free, I started the exercises very moderately, and only the ones that did not cause any pain. Side bends and forward bends were not possible. I did find that the piriformis stretches were the best pain releif for me. They were easier for me doing them sitting down. Take it easy in the beginning and when the pain lessens, try some of the other stretches. We will be watching your progress. By the way, I am back to golfing 3 to 4 times a week, and every now and then there is some tightness, but no pain.

Ken

PostPosted: Wed Jan 11, 2006 5:05 pm
by spursgirl
Thanks for your responses guys. :P Since I posted my comments, the achiness has eased off so I think it was just a reaction to doing ANY form of exercise in ages. I have been doing the basics only: every 2 hours & will do so for 2-4 weeks as Dean suggests. The last thing I want to do is over-do it & make matters worse. I am at least lucky enough that I can move about freely without pain, it's purely sitting that is uncomfortable. I don't think I'm in a worse state than some of you guys out there (going by your comments).

Anyway, thanks again for your warm welcome & good luck to you all. I'll be sure to post an update in due course. Bye for now.

Lisa x

PS. Forgot to add earlier that I actually had 5 sessions of physio therapy which did not help the pain at all, so to anyone thinking of getting treatment, i say NO! Don't do it! Save your money!

PostPosted: Wed Jan 11, 2006 10:31 pm
by Jeanette
spursgirl wrote: Forgot to add earlier that I actually had 5 sessions of physio therapy which did not help the pain at all, so to anyone thinking of getting treatment, i say NO! Don't do it! Save your money!


As the others have notied, you may have been trying to do too much too soon. I'm glad to hear that as you've eased off the exercises a bit, you're somewhat more comfortable. Two comments here, however: first, the need to distinguish between achiness and pain. If you're past the acute pain stage and are begining to rebuild, you may naturally experience some achiness because you may be tapping into unused muscles, but don't get carried away and push yourself too far. Use that ache as a warning that it might be time to back off a bit.

And re physio -- physios, like physicians, are more or less knowledgeable and/or effective, depending on the individual. I sustained a major concussive injury to my lower back about 20 years ago and, frankly, in retrospect, it's been the physical therapists who have, in crisis, provided the most immediate pain relief and, then, the education and exercises that have kept me going. I don't think they've been as systematic toward "rebuilding" as Dean's regimin, but until recently anyway, their advice and exercises have kept me reasonably healthy.

One thing I have learned is to be completely open about how I feel during and after a physio session. Experienced and atuned physios have a lot of tricks up their sleeves that can help provide immediate relief. But, and that's a heavy BUT, it's temporary unless you follow through with exercises and posture corrections that address the problem. And, you may have to search for a physio who looks more at long-term recovery thorugh client education than simply symptomatic relief.

Good luck with your rebuilding program.

Jeanette

PostPosted: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:28 am
by spursgirl
Thanks so much for your advice & comments Jeanette. :P Everyone is different & I realise some methods may work for some & not for others. In my personal situation, although the physiotherapist could see my back was in spasm & my spine was an odd shape, & could see improvements after the sessions, it ultimately didn't take away the soreness. I have eased off the basic exercises today as I am experiencing a little soreness, but I sincerely hope that things will improve soon.

Lisa x