Symptoms of sciatica include shooting pain, tingling or burning sensation felt down a leg, pain in the buttocks or a leg that worsens upon sitting, continual buttock pain, and numbness or weakness in a leg or the buttocks, explains WebMD. Sciatica symptoms generally affect one side of the body.
Pain from sciatica can range from a soft ache to a sharp, burning feeling or extreme discomfort, according to Mayo Clinic. The pain may increase with prolonged sitting, sneezing or coughing.
It is necessary to seek immediate medical care if symptoms include sudden and severe pain in the lower back or a leg, numbness or muscle weakness in a leg, or loss of bowel or bladder control, according to Mayo Clinic. Immediate medical attention should also be sought if the pain occurs after a violent injury. Mild sciatica can generally be treated at home. A doctor consultation is needed if home treatment does not ease symptoms over time, if the pain lasts longer than a week, or if the pain grows worse.
Sciatica occurs when the roots of the lower lumbar and lumbosacral spine become aggravated, explains WebMD. Sciatica is also often caused by degenerative disc disease, lumbar spinal stenosis, pregnancy and spondylolisthesis. Certain factors can worsen the pain of sciatica, such as wearing high heels, sleeping on an overly soft mattress, pregnancy, being overweight or not staying physically fit.