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woodbldr

Sciatic pain

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Good morning all,

This past weekend I was sitting at my bench and carving a violin top and working on guitar bracing.  This has caused a flare up of sciatic pain. I thought about creating a work station so I am more upright when carving, but I was curious if any of you have had similar issues and what changes you made to minimize these flare ups. I am taking anti-inflammatories and doing exercises and that my physical therapist has given me, but the pain is worse after I try to carve.  Maybe staying out of the workshop for a while is the answer, but I would appreciate any advice.

Thanks,

Danny

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I have some Anatomy background, along with some low back issues.  Sitting would put pressure in the general area of that nerve which exits out the greater sciatic notch.  Also with a bent over position I would suspect it also is stretching the glut muscles and nerves a bit.  Combined, that could inflame it.

I stand all the time.  I almost never sit if I can help it.  I have several secondary piggy back benches (basically a fancy foot stool) that go on my main bench when I want to work on something delicate at eye level so I can stand. 

Everybody will want to give you their solution.  People that have experienced any kind of back or sciatica are empathic, but their problems are all unique so advice may or may not work.

As far as the pain, there could be different causes. Most likely they are compounded multiple causes such as lack of muscle, inflexibility, weight, age, perhaps disc issues (such as myself) 

Lack of flexibility is a huge hidden culprit as we age.  We loose flexibility.  We loose muscle mass.  That causes the body to compensate in bad ways which lead to many problems. 

Physical therapy exercises will help correct the main issues,  if you do them all the time.  The real solution is address the holistic problems which may have led to this. 

I recently have found Yoga. It is kicking my ass.  But I stand and sit straighter. My feet don't hurt in the morning.  My whole body strength has vastly improved.  The old shoulder pain is gone.  The lower back feels strong for the first time in 10 years.  Exercise, stretching, and weight lose is the magic pill as we age.

Good luck

 

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Lay on the floor on your back....pull one knee up to your chest, then let it drop down some so the knee is in line with the hip, if you start with your right knee, you will then rotate to the left while keeping your shoulder as pinned to the ground as possible, if everything goes right you'll ear a large popping niose as the nitrogen gas is released from the joint between the vertebrae and lower sacrum,most nerve pain is cause by skeletal misalignment which is cause from unequal muscular strain.

Basically what happens is because the muscles start to tighten like bands, they pull on their connector points and contract, when that happens they "jack"  the  joint into some type of misalignment position, once that happens nitrogen gasses will fill that expanded on one side/compressed on the other joint basically acting like and air jack or "bagged" airshock on one side of the vertebrae, but not the other,by doing a chiropractic "pop" you will release the uneven gas pressure in the joint which will allow for the vertebrae to realign to a more natural position, often times these misalignment will end up pinching a nerve and that is why it hurts. Proper spine alignment will "unpinch" pinched nerves and relive pain.

Virtually 100% of sciatic nerve pain people have dramatic misalignment which when ending up on the Chiro table is easily seen in a posture test that reveals one leg is "riding" way higher or lower in that when the heels are observed , they are not even, one leg is "acting" longer than the other, this compounds the problem,

So

1. Chiropractor

2. yoga and stomach excersice such as sit ups and crunches

3 stretching 

4.good shoes,many people get this pain and the source or the starting point is the shoes

watch this video, the first "pop" he does is the one you want to try to do to yourself.
Dr. Gabriele Benedetti is by far one of the best osteo/chiro guys out there.

The best Chiropractor are also Osteopaths 


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I too have chronic Sciatica, 15 years now. I earned mine by seriously improper lifting of pianos, engines and bass amps, combined with breaking 7 ribs in a 20 year period. The ribs caused to me to have a slightly S shaped spine, from the permanent rib pain. The laying on the floor pulling your leg up does really help, but my rib issues prevent me from doing it more. I always stretch my back a bit before I sit at the bench, and when I feel twinges- caused by a 'slumping' posture as I concentrate close up on a crack repair, etc, I immediately sit straight and arch my back to relieve it. 

For 4 years I had a great chiropractor, and when I felt the twinge of start of a sciatic episode, he would use an imaging thumper device and go down every vertebrae, and on his computer screen it showed the dense muscle areas that were clenched.  Then he would adjust those areas only, usually with a drop table too. I would be good as new for another month, as long as I sat up straight when I drove and worked. He is no longer working, so I'm on my own. Tried 2 other chiropractors, but they were ineffectual.

I need a bench I can stand at.

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I've had a lot of success improving my posture and relieving back pain by buying and using a set of these gymnast rings. I do nothing but hang from them, and relax into the stretch. They're conveniently placed so that I can do it multiple times a day without any particular effort, and last time I saw my doctor he reported that I had gained 1/2" of height! The posture improvement has been effective beyond any expectations I had in making playing the violin more comfortable. If you're overweight, and uncomfortable holding your full weight with your hands, you can set the ring height so that your feet can still be touching the ground to support some of your weight. They're inexpensive and recommended by me.

image.jpg

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All the advice provided is great.  However, if you can not manage through personal physical therapy, ask your doctor about an NSAID called Diclofenac. It changed my life. Much like ibuprofen but focuses on specific pain areas. A keep a bottle around for when my nerve flares every couple if weeks. 5 years ago it would get so bad I would was incapable of moving at night and early morning. I used a cane for awhile during the daytime. 

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When I started in this business I was plagued by recurring  back pain and read something somewhere that suggested my chair was too high. I moved it down several inches lower than I thought was right, so I couldn't lean over my work, and haven't had a single backache since.

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Sciatic pain is terrible. I hope you can find a way to keep it at bay. During my last major episode of lower back pain and sciatica, I got a lot of relief from wearing  a hip wrap that had a microwaveable gel pack in it. I tried chiropractics, massage, physical therapy, NSAIDs, ice baths, exotic stretching, osteopathy, and probably some other things I'm forgetting. The heat wrap was the most effective for me. The heat was very relaxing and helped me go about my work. I think the advice to spend more time standing is right. I don't have a proper chair in my workshop. When you've recovered, I think the advice to strengthen your body is good. I've placed a lot of emphasis on strengthening my glutes and lower back which I think has helped.

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I've had chronic back issues for years, but my first experience with sciatic pain was in 2002. We had a family gathering, and while putting away tables and chairs afterward, I must have twisted my back. The next day I woke up with excruciating back pain, and with any slight movement, it was like someone driving a screw into my spine.  It was all I could do, under great pain, to crawl to the bathroom twice a day.

After a couple weeks, my wife managed to help me out to the vehicle, stuff me into the passenger seat and drove me to the chiropractor. He wasn't able to do much, as any movement caused great pain, but he did hook me up to a high voltage pulse machine that sort of loosened up some tension and helped a little. I wasn't able to walk for about 8 weeks, after which the pain slowly started to subside.

Even today, If I strain my back lifting, I still get twinges of pain, but nothing as bad as what I had at that time. When my back is aching, I discovered lying on my back on a 50 gallon drum tipped on it's side out in the yard helps greatly; I can hear the vertebrae popping as I sort of roll the drum back and forth slightly while pushing with my feet. The radius of the drum seems to be about right for putting a little bit of stress on the curvature of the spine. It's instant relief.  The only drawback is, in the winter a -30C drum isn't very pleasant to lie on, even for a couple of minutes.

I too find when I'm hunched over something on the bench for any period of time, my back starts aching; in fact, even standing working in one place aggravates it. If I'm continually moving about, it seems to be fine.

 

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All

Thanks for the advice, my pain started in my lower back and is now right behind my wallet. The PT said it's where the piriformis muscle is.  It first happened after crawling on the floor putting on base trim/shoe molding in our bathroom before Christmas. That made the 3 day drive to New Mexico and back a lot of fun. I guess bending over triggers it somehow.  Back and leg stretches have helped.  You have given me some other great ideas, thanks again.

Danny

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I have heard  that keeping a large wallet in your back pocket presses on a vulnerable spot and can trigger sciatica!

7 minutes ago, woodbldr said:

All

Thanks for the advice, my pain started in my lower back and is now right behind my wallet. The PT said it's where the piriformis muscle is.  It first happened after crawling on the floor putting on base trim/shoe molding in our bathroom before Christmas. That made the 3 day drive to New Mexico and back a lot of fun. I guess bending over triggers it somehow.  Back and leg stretches have helped.  You have given me some other great ideas, thanks again.

Danny

 

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1 hour ago, SingingTree Tonewood said:

Thanks for the advice, my pain started in my lower back and is now right behind my wallet.

 

Pains in the walletall region are not unusual, these days. ;)

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On 4/9/2020 at 3:06 PM, woodbldr said:

Good morning all,

This past weekend I was sitting at my bench and carving a violin top and working on guitar bracing.  This has caused a flare up of sciatic pain. I thought about creating a work station so I am more upright when carving, but I was curious if any of you have had similar issues and what changes you made to minimize these flare ups. I am taking anti-inflammatories and doing exercises and that my physical therapist has given me, but the pain is worse after I try to carve.  Maybe staying out of the workshop for a while is the answer, but I would appreciate any advice.

Thanks,

Danny

The pain comes from sitting and is enhanced if you sit with a round back (kyphosis on the lower back). Stop sitting, walk and run as often as you can and do some sciatic exercises from time to time (there are plenty of them on YouTube). 

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I damaged my back when I was 17, and suffered bouts of pain several times a year till I was 37. Then I was unable to work for a month, and found asports physiotherapist who straightened  me out over about six weeks.  She gave me massage treatments, and exercises to do.

But most importantly, she had me buy a chair  for the workshop, one of those kneeling ones. The back is kept straight  and upright, and you're very mobile in the seat. I have never looked back. 

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21 minutes ago, Conor Russell said:

I damaged my back when I was 17, and suffered bouts of pain several times a year till I was 37. Then I was unable to work for a month, and found asports physiotherapist who straightened  me out over about six weeks.  She gave me massage treatments, and exercises to do.

 

Typically, episodes of acute back pain self-resolve in about one-to-six weeks, anyway. So it becomes difficult to say whether various forms of intervention do anything, or not. In my experience, physical therapists have not turned out to have much over violin makers. People like to profess their beliefs.

I've been dealing with this for about five decades.

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I encourage anyone with this kind of pain or lower back injury to lay on your back and bend one leg, then rotate your body in the direction of your straight leg. Keep focused on your upper to mid back staying firm on the floor and your arms straight out, also your shoulders on the floor. You shouldn't need to hold your bent leg unless you need to for fear of overstretching or abdominal weakness. You should feel a major stretch through your lower back and sciatic nerve, as you bring your bent leg as far over your straight leg as comfort allows. It can feel like a lot at first. Now that I am recovered from my back injury this is a rather basic and simple stretch, hardly any stretch at all, but it definitely wasn't easy at first. I did this 3x a day to recover from injury. I kept at it, and I did recover. It took longer than 6 weeks. Good luck to anyone dealing with nerve pain. 

 

And get a TENS unit. A $10 or $20 one is great, they're ubiquitous online. It will help. 

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17 hours ago, jezzupe said:

Lay on the floor on your back....pull one knee up to your chest, then let it drop down some so the knee is in line with the hip, if you start with your right knee, you will then rotate to the left while keeping your shoulder as pinned to the ground as possible, if everything goes right you'll ear a large popping niose as the nitrogen gas is released from the joint between the vertebrae and lower sacrum,most nerve pain is cause by skeletal misalignment which is cause from unequal muscular strain.

Basically what happens is because the muscles start to tighten like bands, they pull on their connector points and contract, when that happens they "jack"  the  joint into some type of misalignment position, once that happens nitrogen gasses will fill that expanded on one side/compressed on the other joint basically acting like and air jack or "bagged" airshock on one side of the vertebrae, but not the other,by doing a chiropractic "pop" you will release the uneven gas pressure in the joint which will allow for the vertebrae to realign to a more natural position, often times these misalignment will end up pinching a nerve and that is why it hurts. Proper spine alignment will "unpinch" pinched nerves and relive pain.

Virtually 100% of sciatic nerve pain people have dramatic misalignment which when ending up on the Chiro table is easily seen in a posture test that reveals one leg is "riding" way higher or lower in that when the heels are observed , they are not even, one leg is "acting" longer than the other, this compounds the problem,

So

1. Chiropractor

2. yoga and stomach excersice such as sit ups and crunches

3 stretching 

4.good shoes,many people get this pain and the source or the starting point is the shoes

watch this video, the first "pop" he does is the one you want to try to do to yourself.
Dr. Gabriele Benedetti is by far one of the best osteo/chiro guys out there.

The best Chiropractor are also Osteopaths 

 

I felt that. Favorite is at 7:30 though

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14 minutes ago, not telling said:

I felt that. Favorite is at 7:30 though

If the aim was technical enlightenment, how necessary was it to use a model-level woman, so scantily clad?

I tend to think that most good tech stuff will stand on its own merit, without relying on suggestions venturing into the porn realm.

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5 minutes ago, David Burgess said:

If the aim was technical enlightenment, how necessary was it to use a model-level woman, so scantily clad?

I tend to think that most good tech stuff will stand on its own merit, without suggestions venturing into the porn realm.

It kept you watching, didn't it?;)

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12 minutes ago, not telling said:

All of the women in his videos are insanely attractive. I don't see that as a problem.

Why do you not?

Using "insanely attractive" women as a marketing ploy?

Based on your past posting history, I expected you to do a lot better.

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46 minutes ago, David Burgess said:

Typically, episodes of acute back pain self-resolve in about one-to-six weeks, anyway. So it becomes difficult to say whether various forms of intervention do anything, or not. In my experience, physical therapists have not turned out to have much over violin makers. People like to profess their beliefs.

I've been dealing with this for about five decades.

Well, I'm glad I went to a good physiotherapist,  rather than a good violin maker for my problem. 

Twenty years of crippling  pain  several times a year,  followed  by  twenty pain free years speak for themselves. 

Anyway, my main point was that a chair that  forces good posture can be a life saver.

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