Acupuncture For Sciatica: Can It Help?

Avatar for Clare Zivanovic By in Acupuncture For Sciatica on 13/03/2023
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Do you have pain that travels from your lower back and through your hips? Or maybe it starts in your butt and moves down your leg?

If you do, you may have sciatica and need support to feel better.

Fortunately, there are many sciatica treatment options. And if you prefer natural alternatives, you’re definitely in the right place.

Let’s look at how acupuncture for sciatica can help erase your pain..

What is Sciatica?

Sciatica is when you have pain travelling down the sciatic nerve.

The long sciatic nerve root begins in your lower back, runs through your hips and buttocks, and down each of your legs.

Anyone who’s suffered with nerve pain knows how horrible it is. It produces a sharp, shooting kind of pain that catches you off guard. It may feel electrical in areas along the nerve and feel like a mini electric shock.

Sciatic nerve pain can make it difficult to sit and sleep. Sometimes walking can be hard too. The pain and discomfort may be mild, but it can also be disabling and stop you from living your normal life.

The causes of sciatica include:

  • Lumbar disc problems, such as degeneration and hernia

This causes nerve compression and pain as the cushioning between vertebrae reduces.

  • Spinal Stenosis 

Involves narrowing of the spinal canal, which causes nerve compression.

  • Spinal Vertebrae Fracture

This can misalign the spine and affect nerves

  • Nerve Damage

Injuries and medical conditions, such as diabetes, can damage the nerve

  • Pregnancy

As the foetus grows and the mother’s hips move to compensate, sciatica pain can develop.

  • Tight Muscles (Piriformis Syndrome)

Occurs when tight muscles irritate or press on the sciatic nerve. This can mimic sciatic pain and nerve compression.

Does Acupuncture For Sciatica Work?

If you’re wondering Will acupuncture help sciatica?, we have good news.

Studies show that acupuncture for sciatic pain can be very useful.

If you have sciatica but want a natural pain relief option, acupuncture can help you feel better. It’s a great way to ease discomfort without NSAIDs, which have side effects.

But, what if your pain is so intense that you can’t do without antiinflammatories.

Will acupuncture treatment for sciatica still work???


Here’s what one systemic review said:

“…acupuncture may more effectively relieve leg pain/lumbago and improve global assessment of sciatica when compared with NSAID (ibuprofen, meloxicam, and diclofenac) treatment. Moreover, adjuvant acupuncture may enhance the effect of medications in leg pain/lumbago relief”.

How Does Acupuncture For Sciatica Work?

Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medicine. It involves inserting tiny needles into acupuncture points, which releases healing chemicals and neurotransmitters. These substances travel via the nervous system to the muscles, brain and spinal cord.

When you use acupuncture for sciatica, you feel better because these chemicals help to:

  • relax tight muscles
  • decrease inflammation
  • reduce pain levels
  • ease stress and tension
  • improve blood flow to promote self-healing.

The aim of acupuncture is to treat the whole person, not just the symptom. That’s why multiple acupuncture points will be used to treat sciatica. Some of them will be local to your site of pain, others will not, e.g. acupuncture points in the top of your head. Regardless of where the needs are inserted, you can trust that every point is working together to help you feel better.

How Many Acupuncture Treatments For Sciatica?

Ready to try acupuncture for sciatica pain?

If so, you probably want to know how quickly you’ll get relief.

Well, there’s no one-size-fits all answer. Results vary depending on how long you’ve been in pain, the cause of your sciatica and how severe it is.

In saying this, most people notice improvement within 2-3 acupuncture sessions.

Rest assured that healing will begin during your first session.

Even if you don’t notice a huge difference instantly, be patient. The effects of acupuncture may take a little while to reach your conscious awareness. This is because acupuncture impacts your subtle energy, before you feel it physically.

Acupuncture For Sciatica Near Me

Now that you’re ready to try acupuncture for sciatica…

  • Where do you start?
  • Who can you trust?
  • How much will it cost?

Relax, Avaana can help you find a trusted acupuncturist in your area.

Using the search bar on the Avaana booking platform, type ‘Acupuncture’ in the service box. Then choose your suburb, e.g. Pascoe Vale. You’ll then see a list of all the acupuncturists in your area. Click on the ones you like to see when they’re available and how much they charge. It really is that easy.

Click here to try acupuncture for sciatica now

Avatar for Clare Zivanovic

Clare Zivanovic is a qualified Naturopath, Nutritionist and Medical Herbalist. She's been part of the health industry since 1999, and has shared her wisdom on commercial television, podcasts and in best-selling health magazines. Clare is also proud to have published a popular children's book called Superfood Attitude.