How to Relieve Sciatic Pain in the Pelvic & Hip Joints

The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the body and runs the entire length of the leg, from the hip to the sole of the foot. If the nerve is injured, or if muscles such as the piriformis irritate the nerve, you might experience pain in your hip or pelvis. The pain also can radiate down the back of your leg and into your heel. How you relieve the pain depends on the severity of the condition.

Close up of an electric heating pad (Image: popovaphoto/iStock/Getty Images)

Step 1

Take a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, or NSAID, such as ibuprofen or naproxen. MayoClinic.com advises that these drugs can reduce tissue swelling and relieve pressure on the nerve.

Step 2

Apply heat in 20-minute increments every two hours for the first 24 hours. Heat relaxes the muscles and helps relieve the pain.

Step 3

Apply a topical analgesic such as a menthol-based hot/cold ointment after the first 24 hours. The ointment relieves the pain and provides additional heat. Do not use hot/cold ointment with the heating pad.

Step 4

Do light exercise, such as walking, but avoid the activity that caused the initial injury. MayoClinic.com advises that exercise releases endorphins, which can help relieve sciatic pain.

Step 5

Stretch the piriformis, hamstrings and lower back, such as with forward bends and lower back twists. Hold the stretches for up to 30 seconds and breathe normally. Avoid bouncing or jerking during the stretch.

Step 6

Consult your physician about prescription medication or physical therapy if the pain continues for more than six weeks.

Things You'll Need

  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

  • Heating pad

  • Topical analgesic

REFERENCES & RESOURCES
Load Comments
PARTNER & LICENSEE OF THE LIVESTRONG FOUNDATION

Copyright © 2019 Leaf Group Ltd. Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of the LIVESTRONG.COM Terms of Use , Privacy Policy and Copyright Policy . The material appearing on LIVESTRONG.COM is for educational use only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse any of the products or services that are advertised on the web site. Moreover, we do not select every advertiser or advertisement that appears on the web site-many of the advertisements are served by third party advertising companies.