Back and leg pain from sciatica can be treated in a number of ways, including pain relievers, muscle relaxants and antidepressants, according to WebMD. In some cases, hot and cold packs and physical therapy may be called for, and steroids may be prescribed.
Sciatica affects about 40 percent of people at some time in their lives. The condition occurs when the sciatic nerve, which runs down the back of the leg to the knees and into the feet, has pressure applied to it or is irritated in some way. Pain caused by sciatica varies quite a bit, and can range from mild aching to severe pain. Sciatica may also produce weakness, tingling or numbness. For pain relief from sciatica, several medications may be taken. The usually prescribed oral medications include pain relievers that can be purchased over the counter such as aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen, ketoprofen or naproxen. Prescription pain relief medications are employed for more extreme discomfort. Prescription muscle relaxants may be prescribed to lessen spasming. In some cases, an injection of steroids may be made into the space around the spinal nerve. Other alternate remedies for sciatica pain include acupuncture and biofeedback.
Physical therapy may be recommended in certain cases, as these exercises can help to reduce the pain. In some severe cases, surgery may be necessary to alleviate the condition causing the sciatica.