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Doctor insights on: Sciatica Heat Or Ice

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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

Dr. Qamar Khan
1,077 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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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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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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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

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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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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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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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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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Can ice help to reduce sciatica pain?

Can ice help to reduce sciatica pain?

Possibly: However, it will be temporary as it takes a lot to get down into the spine which might not work. Sounds like you have a pinched nerve in your back. I would suggest seeing a pain/spine specialist to evaluate you further to evaluate what level and what can be done to treat you. There are interventional treatments besides medications and surgeries that might reduce or eliminate the pain altogether ...Read more

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Is it normal to have an ice cold foot with low back pain and sciatica?

Is it normal to have an ice cold foot with low back pain and sciatica?

Common, Not Normal: Patients often share altered sensations such cold extremities with low back pain and sciatica. It would also be a good idea to be evaluated for vascular issues in the leg. ...Read more

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Heat or ice on injury?

Heat or ice on injury?

Cold then heat: Most sports medicine experts recommend cold first, because it decreases swelling and pain. Then later, heat frequently provides more relief. However, you are the ultimate judge: use the one that works best for you. ...Read more

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What is best for gout; heat or ice?

What is best for gout; heat or ice?

Ice: Ice improves pain from gout attacks, in contrast to the pain from other kinds of inflammatory arthritis like rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis which generally improve with heat. ...Read more

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What's better for a pinched nerve, heat or ice?

What's better for a pinched nerve, heat or ice?

Pain Treatment: I recommend using the treatment which gives you better pain relief. Usually ice for the first 3-4 days to decrease swelling followed by heat to improve bloodflow and promote healing is prescribed. ...Read more

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Is it appropriate to use ice or heat on head injuries?

Is it appropriate to use ice or heat on head injuries?

Depends: If the ice is used on a superficial contusion, that is fine but for any possible internal or closed head injury, the treatment is to get seen asap by a medical professional. ...Read more

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Do I need to use heat or ice? And do I need meds for inflamation? How long should it last?

Do I need to use heat or ice? And do I need meds for inflamation? How long should it last?

Both: Ice first 24-48 hours after injury. Then heat. Apply 10 mins every 2-4 hours. Don't frostbite or burn yourself. Ice works after it is removed. Ur body says 'hey its cold there', sends a wave of blood to the hurt area and washes out the inflammation toxins. The heat opens up the blood vessels and washes out the toxins. ...Read more

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I was recently in a car accident, and my back has been hurting me. Is it better to ice it or apply heat?

I was recently in a car accident, and my back has been hurting me. Is it better to ice it or apply heat?

Both: Initially first 24-48 hours they recommend ice. To minimize any damages and to slow any bleeding, ice will constrict the blood vessels, and minimize damages
after they recommend heat, by now the muscle hurt, and spastic, heat will help the muscle relax, and minimize the spasm.
the important thing is, if you have not been evaluated by a physician since the accident, go and do so, you might have a bad injury ...Read more

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I hurt the back bottom of my neck slightly while exercising should I use ice or heat in first 48 hours please?

I hurt the back bottom of my neck slightly while exercising should I use ice or heat in first 48 hours please?

Ice pack: I would advise to apply ice pack. Apply ice pack to the affected area 5 times/day, as tolerated. Good luck! ...Read more

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I didn't stretch before my baseball game and I pulled a musle in my back should I use ice or heat and how do I heal?

I didn't stretch before my baseball game and I pulled a musle in my back should I use ice or heat and how do I heal?

Acute injury: Ice is best to help reduce swelling and inflammation initially. Some people find that heat helps increase motility and relieves pain afterwards, especially after periods of rest such as sleep. NSAIDs such as Motrin or Advil (ibuprofen) every 6-8 hours are also frequently advised. ...Read more

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I've got a pain since am on my left middle side back, took pain pills, put ice and heat and pain is still there. Can you help me?

I've got a pain since am on my left middle side back, took pain pills, put ice and heat and pain is still there. Can you help me?

Uncertain: There can be a lot of other reasons. You could consider Musca skeletal things, kidney problems, other things too. You need to discuss this with your physician since it is persisting ...Read more

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I have a severe pain in my back on the left side right where my bra strap is. I've had it more than 2 weeks and have tried ice heat ibuprofenbut no hel?

I have a severe pain in my back on the left side right where my bra strap is. I've had it more than 2 weeks and have tried ice heat ibuprofenbut no hel?

Muscular: Since it has been a few weeks and no better, no is the time to see your doc to have an exam. Most of these issues resolve in time. You may benefit from some physical therapy. ...Read more

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Which is better to use,  heat or ice?

Which is better to use,  heat or ice?

Ice or heat?: Ice in the first 48 hours after an injury or if there is swelling. Heat after 48 hours if no swelling. Heat also for muscle strains. ...Read more

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How do you know when you should ice an injury or apply heat?

How do you know when you should ice an injury or apply heat?

Ice early: Ice for the first 24-36 hours to reduce inflammation and pain. Heat thereafter. Always heat before exercise and therapy and use ice after to deal with pain and inflammation. ...Read more

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Is it better to use ice first or heat first with a recent injury?

Is it better to use ice first or heat first with a recent injury?

In acute injury ice: First day or two, heat should be fine after that. ...Read more

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Any thing I can do to help it like ice or heat. My back been pain full of and over ten years now?

Any thing I can do to help it like ice or heat. My back been pain full of and over ten years now?

See answer: There are a number of reasons people get back pain. The following websites will explain the causes of back pain and types of treatment. Http://bit. Ly/1r1aZ7G http://bit. Ly/1lF3Xcs http://bit. Ly/1v1juFX http://bit. Ly/1QEatgy ...Read more