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Doctor insights on: Heating Pads Help With Sciatica

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Can I use moist heating pad to manage sciatica?

Can I use moist heating pad to manage sciatica?

Yes: The sciatic nerve can be irritated because of a herniated disc, arthritis that results in tightening of the spinal canal, falls, injuries, or other rare reasons (tumors, infections). Anti-inflammatory medications, alternating heat/cold therapy, physical therapy (especially with traction) can be helpful to relieve sciatic pain. ...Read more

Dr. Qamar Khan
1,075 Doctors shared insights

Sciatica (Definition)

A condition that results in pain, weakness, numbness, or tingling in the leg. It results from injury to or pressure on the sciatic nerve, which starts in the lower spine and runs down the ...Read more


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I have sciatica and have been literally sitting on a heating pad for hours at a time. Could this be making the pain worse?

I have sciatica and have been literally sitting on a heating pad for hours at a time. Could this be making the pain worse?

No, but watch burns: Sciatica can be treated. If your heat pad doesn't resolve this (likely) see a pain or PMR doc for, work up of cause. Then treatments including home stretching.
Prolonged use of high heat can burn tissues, causing them to discolor. This should be avoided.
I n reality the sciatic nerve is over 5 inches deep, and the heat just doesn't get down that far ...Read more

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Mild low back pain felt from fall/ will heating pad help?

Mild low back pain felt from fall/ will heating pad help?

Maybe: Heat is good for muscle tightness and spasm. Ice best for soreness and tenderness from inflammation. If it hurts to touch, ice it first, then put the heat on. Each one for only 15-20 min. Both can cause burns if used too long per session. Can repeat process several times/day. If the symptoms don't improve within a week, seek medical evaluation. ...Read more

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I'm having neck and low back pain what do I do my pain meds are not helping I tried heating pads my pain meds relaxing bed rest

I'm having neck and low back pain what do I do my pain meds are not helping I tried heating pads my pain meds relaxing bed rest

Reevaluation: You may need to be reevaluated to discuss options for treating the cause of your pain rather than "just" taking pain medications, using a heating pad and resting. Based upon the specific diagnosis of the cause of your pain, there may be more powerful treatment options available. ...Read more

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Major low back pain. Recurring. Injured this morning when getting out of bed. Advil (ibuprofen) ineffective. Heat pads help. Muscle or nerve? How to treat?

Major low back pain. Recurring. Injured this morning when getting out of bed. Advil (ibuprofen) ineffective. Heat pads help. Muscle or nerve? How to treat?

Have you been seen?: First if you have never been seen for this, it is time to go see the doctor. It is better to apply cold to the area until you understand what is wrong in the back. Muscle vs nerve is addressed with the physical exam. Treatment is based on the working diagnosis after physical exam and maybe xrays. Could your pain stem from kidney, uterus, bladder? ...Read more

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Should I use ice or heat for sciatica, after a week?

Should I use ice or heat for sciatica, after a week?

Either: You can try ice and heat or either. It depends on how each one makes you feel. Some people like doing heat applications for 10 minutes and then putting ice for about 10 minutes. While others like just heat or ice. ...Read more

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I have lower back pain just pressing on my back brings pain is this sciatica? Heat and cold therapy doesn't always work.

I have lower back pain just pressing on my back brings pain is this sciatica? Heat and cold therapy doesn't always work.

Muscle Spasm: Trigger points are bands of taut muscle areas that hurt when pressed upon and radiate to other areas than just the painful spot that is pressed upon. Most times stretching and massage of that area relieves these spots, however sometime they continue and need to be addressed by your doctor. ...Read more

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What are the best stretches for sciatica? Pain goes from tailbone through left buttocks down leg into left ankle. Is heat or ice better?

What are the best stretches for sciatica? Pain goes from tailbone through left buttocks down leg into left ankle. Is heat or ice better?

Core Exercises: Typically core strengthening exercises are the best to help relieve pressure and forces in the spine. I would try and google some or look them up on youtube to see descriptions. If you can do them yourself, wonderful otherwise ask your doctor to get a referral to a good physical therapist for further assistance. Ice recommended for 1st 48 hrs, then ice or heat is fine. ...Read more

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Calf is achey. History of sciatica. The arch of foot seems to be collapsing with weigh. A little tender to touch. No swelling, heat, or redness. Cause?

Calf is achey. History of sciatica. The arch of foot seems to be collapsing with weigh. A little tender to touch. No swelling, heat, or redness. Cause?

Its All Related: Back is related to how the arch fell in your foot resulting in knee joints changing position that results in hip issues then translating to stress in your spine resulting in pieced nerves causing your sciatica. That's said, likely improving your arch with support/orthotic will help reduce the back pain. Remember this will not happen overnight but will take time and your feet will hurt initially. ...Read more

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Is heat or ice better for low back pain? Especially if there is a lumbar disk herniated? What are the symptoms of having a lumbar disk herniated?

Is heat or ice better for low back pain? Especially if there is a lumbar disk herniated? What are the symptoms of having a lumbar disk herniated?

Both: Both can help but it may differ from pt to pt sometimes it helps to go back and forth between heat and cold / if you feel one is much more helpful for you then stick with that / use apiece of swim noodle behind the small of your back while sitting as a "lumbar roll" I have found this to help many people including me over the years hope you feel better. ...Read more

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Sciatica in spine. Cant stand up straight. Base of spine hurts. Loosenin w heatin pad. Took 2 aleve (naproxen). Early am. Late pm really make it painful. Help?

Sciatica in spine. Cant stand up straight. Base of spine hurts. Loosenin w heatin pad. Took 2 aleve (naproxen). Early am. Late pm really make it painful. Help?

Many Possibilities: Depending on how long it's been going on, I would consider an evaluation by a spine specialist. Sometimes it could be a muscle imbalance, early onset arthritis or scoliosis. Also could be a pinched nerve/herniated disc. Either way it might be good to figure it out and get appropriate treatment. ...Read more

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Do heating pads work well for fibromyalgia?

Do heating pads work well for fibromyalgia?

Probably: ? heating pad help for fibromyalgia (FM) pain. Painful muscle spasms occur with FM and heat application would likely help. Some sufferers apply cannabis lotion after the heat & then massage these spastic muscle regions; they have reported benefits. The topical cannabis would not cause any significant blood levels or a "high" feeling. ...Read more

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Can a heating pad be used for mettorrphagia?

Can a heating pad be used for mettorrphagia?

Sure.: If you mean metrorrhagia, meaning irregular bleeding between periods, a heating pad may not help prevent bleeding but may help with the cramps you get when you bleed. You should be evaluated by a gyn though b/c bleeding between periods isn't normal and usually is easily treatable. Could be a polyp, an infection, fibroid, or perimenopause. ...Read more

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What exactly is a heating pad and kind to use?

Heating pad: A heating pad is basically a thin flat plastic pad with coils inside, which when plugged in, warm the pad. There are many brands available, but choosing one with a washable fabric cover and at least three heat settings would be best. Most drug stores sell them. ...Read more

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What would you do if you have a netlike rach but you don't use heating pad or anything? What could it be

What would you do if you have a netlike rach but you don't use heating pad or anything? What could it be

Livedo reticularis: Netlike rash (livedo reticularis) could be a normal variant with cold exposure. In this case it disappears once skin is warmed up. If it is a persistent skin pattern, some investigation & possibly a skin biopsy are needed. Livedo is a vascular pattern, meaning there is some inflammation of blood vessels, which can be seen in lupus, vasculitis, certain meds & others. Please see dermatologist. ...Read more

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I've had this pain in my back in between my shoulders off in on for the past few weeks, I've laid on a heating pad and it dosent help what can I do?

I've had this pain in my back in between my shoulders off in on for the past few weeks, I've laid on a heating pad and it dosent help what can I do?

FIBROMYALGIA: THORACIC MPS/FIBROMYALGIA Ultrasound usually relieves pain by improving blood flow to tender muscles. If it flares symptoms you may have fibromyalgia or a herniated disc stay the T2-T6 levels. You need a full exam labs. X-ray of thoracic spine and potential MRI If symptoms persist or worsen. TRY TENS TX. Start a gluten free diet WholeApproach. Com and gutbliss. Com MEDS: LYRICA/SAVELLA/CYMBALTA. ...Read more

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Can heating pads help sciatic pain?

Can heating pads help sciatic pain?

Sciatic pain: Depends. Sometimes sciatic pain is helped by heat and sometimes helped by ice packs. There are several causes of sciatic pain and it is best to see your doctor to find out the cause and to give you proper treatment. ...Read more