Buttocks and nerve pain are usually the result of sciatica, an issue with the sciatic nerve. This type of pain may start in the lower back and extend to your buttocks and as far down as your feet on one side of the body. This pain may go away without treatment, but in some cases, medical treatment is necessary.
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Causes of Sciatica
The sciatic nerve runs from the spinal cord to the buttocks and down the legs. The nerve is responsible for muscle movement in the lower legs and feet. When a nerve root is compressed in the spine, pain in the buttocks and legs occurs. The cause of nerve root compression is usually a disc tear, in which gel is escaping from the disc and pushes on the nerve. Tingling or weakness in the buttock area also occurs with sciatica.
If sciatica is caused by a herniated disk, physical therapy may help. Your therapist will teach you exercises to correct posture, strengthen muscles and boost flexibility. Some situations also require prescription medications, such as an anti-inflammatory drug or muscle relaxants. Narcotic pain medications may also be prescribed.
If sciatica isn’t responding to treatment, your doctor might recommend an epidural steroid injection. A corticosteroid medication is injected into the area to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. The most serious cases require surgery to remove the portion of the herniated disc that’s pressing on the nerve.
There are several home remedies that help ease sciatica pain. Apply a cold pack to the inflamed area for up to 20 minutes several times a day. A few days after the injury, apply hot compresses or a heating pad on the lowest setting. Stretching the muscles also helps relieve some of the pain. Also, talk with your doctor about an exercise routine. Low-impact exercise, such as riding a stationary bike, can help combat chronic discomfort from sciatica, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Although it isn’t always possible to avoid sciatica, a few steps will minimize your risk. When sitting down, maintain correct posture. Use a back support if you work sitting down all day to assist with posture. Lift heavy objects with your legs, rather than your back. Also, avoid twisting when you’re lifting an object. If your work requires you to stand for long-periods of time, take regular breaks to rest your back.