Sciatica is a condition that millions of people suffer from. It can cause severe pain, numbness, and weakness in the lower back, buttocks, and legs. So why can the summer be a problem for flaring up people’s sciatica?
Here are some factors that can contribute to sciatica flare-ups during the summer months:
- Increased activity: Engaging in activities like hiking, gardening, cycling, and playing outdoor sports can put stress on the lower back and legs, exacerbating sciatica symptoms. In the winter months, many of us aren’t as active, so when summer hits, our bodies aren’t yet conditioned to the increase in activity.
- Dehydration: On those hot summer days it’s easy to forget to drink more when having fun. When the body is dehydrated, muscles can cramp and spasm, putting pressure on the sciatic nerve. Also, hot weather can exacerbate these symptoms by causing excessive sweating.
- Poor posture: Slouching or hunching over can put pressure on the lower back and legs, leading to sciatica symptoms. This could be due to long periods sitting in a car or plane going on vacation for example. Or hanging out with friends in parks or restaurants.
When trying to reduce sciatica flare-ups during the summer, here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Take breaks: Be mindful of your body and take breaks every 20-30 minutes if you’re engaging in physical activity.
- Stretch regularly: Stretch before and after physical activity to warm up the muscles and prevent injuries. Consider incorporating exercises like yoga or pilates to strengthen the muscles that support the lower back.
- Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of water and eat foods that are high in water content to prevent dehydration. Leafy greens and fresh fruits are great for hydrating the muscles.
- Maintain good posture: Keep your feet flat on the ground, your knees bent at a 90-degree angle, and your back straight while sitting.
While sciatica can flare up at any time of the year, being aware of the factors that can exacerbate symptoms during the summer months is crucial. By taking preventative measures like taking breaks, stretching regularly, staying hydrated, and maintaining good posture, you might be able to reduce the risk of sciatica flare-ups and enjoy the summer months without pain and discomfort.
Remember, taking care of your body is essential for overall health and well-being. If you are experiencing sciatica problems you can book an appointment with the South Orange Chiropractic team, and see what we can do to assist you. Consider making an appointment before your summer holiday so you can get the most out of your vacation.