Of the many types of chronic pain, one of the most painful is that caused by sciatica. Sciatica refers to pain caused from the sciatic nerve, which travels from the lower back through the hips and down each leg of the body. There are many causes of sciatica with herniated discs being one of the most common as they put pressure on the nerve.
People who suffer from sciatica may experience numbness, tingling, or muscle weakness in the effected leg or foot. They can also have mild to severe pain along the nerve. While some cases of sciatica require surgery, most cases do not require this type of intervention. For individuals suffering from sciatica in need of relief, a natural method of pain management that may be helpful is utilizing acupressure points, place on the body for addressing pain that were discovered by ancient Chinese medicine. Here are some of the most effective acupressure points for relief of pain from sciatica.
Side of the Hips
The Gallbladder 30 acupressure point is perhaps the most common acupressure point utilized to provide relief from sciatica pain. This point is known in Chinese as Huan Tiao, which translates to “jumping round.” While its most common use is to help with sciatica, it is also used for general pain in the hips, lower back, buttocks, and legs as well for numbness and atrophy of these areas.
Locating this point is relatively easy as it lies on the side of your hips. It is located deep below your glute muscles. You will find it just below and behind the point on the side of your hip. Apply firm pressure to the side where you are experiencing the sciatic pain for between one and three minutes. Since this point is relatively deep beneath the muscle, utilizing a tennis ball and rolling it on the area can be an effective way to trigger this point.
Behind the Knee
If your sciatic pain is primarily in your legs instead of your back, the Bladder 54 point is a great one to trigger in order to help with relief. This point’s Chinese name is Zhibian, which translates to “lowermost edge.” This point is used for a number of things include numbness of your lower extremities, sciatica, swelling of the lower body, constipation, and hemorrhoids. It functions by relaxing the sinews and removing obstructions.
Triggering this point is relatively easy as well. You will find it behind your knee. In fact, this point lies in the center of the crease formed when you bend your knee, so it is simple to find. Depending upon your preference, it is recommended to use either the thumb or index finger to trigger this point. Utilize firm pressure while making circular motions for up to one minute. Again, focus on the side that is experiencing the sciatic pain.
Near Thumb and Index Finger
Another important point for heling address sciatic pain can actually be found on your hands. This point is the Large Intestine 4 point, known as He Gu or “junction valley.” This point exerts a large amount of control over many of the body’s processes. It is commonly used for relief of pain from headaches and sinus pain; however, it also exerts relief for lower back pain including that related to sciatica. It is important to note that sciatic pain experienced lower in the body – such as in the legs – may not be affected by this particular point.
He Gu can be found in the fleshy part on the outside of your hand near the junction of the thumb and index finger. In fact, if you hold your hand with the palm facing downwards and make an L-shape, you can place your other thumb in the soft area forming the angle of the L. This is He Gu. It is a very sensitive point, so be sure to be careful with the amount of pressure applied as it is relatively easy to apply too much. Massage the area for between 30 seconds and one minute on the side of the body affected by sciatic pain.
(Psst: this is the acupressure point Aculief's Wearable Acupressure Clip triggers)
Outside of Knees
A very effective point for the treatment of sciatic pain is that of the Gallbladder 34 point. This point is known as Yanglingquan, which translates to “mound spring.” There are a number of different things that are treated by activating the GB 34 acupressure point in addition to sciatica. These include spasms in the leg muscles and calves, various musculoskeletal conditions, numbness, and piriformis syndrome.
You will find this point on the outer side of your lower leg. You will find a small depression just in front of and below the head of your fibula. This is the point that you will want to trigger. Place your thumb in this area and activate the acupressure point with gentle pressure. This is a place near many tendons, so too much pressure may cause some pain. Massage the area for one to two minutes on the side of the body where you experience sciatic pain. This point is best triggered in the morning.
Sciatica can be an incredibly painful condition that send many people wanting rapid relief. While there are many treatments for sciatica, utilizing acupressure points can be an effective method of pain relief for many people. One of the major benefits of using acupressure therapy is that it can be done at home and serves as a natural method of pain relief.
For people who experience mild sciatica pain, acupressure may provide relief. Experiment with the different acupressure points to identify which ones are most effective in relieving pain. Many people experience pain shortly after being active, so triggering the pressure points in the morning shortly after waking up – particularly the Gallbladder 34 point – can be an effective method for reducing the onset of pain once you begin moving around.
As always, please check out our other blogs for more natural healing information and visit aculief.com if you are interested in wearable acupressure products for headache and migraine relief.