News Flash: Sciatica Sucks.
When it strikes the pain can feel like lightning shooting through your spine. No drug or analgesic prescribed by your doctor will help much, if at all. To cap it off, the way sciatica works, that shooting, burning, searing pain you feel which leaves you in a quivering ball on the floor is largely just in your head.
What is sciatica? The Short Course:
Sciatica is an amazingly fucked up condition that can strike you at any point in life, there is no predicting or preventing it, once you get your first sciatica attack, its just that: the first. This will repeat the rest of your life and once they start your only option is to ride them out until the painful end.
Why won't pain meds help?
The condition starts when some part of the spinal nervous system gets pinched, usually in or near the vertebra. Its not the pinch of the nerve that hurts though; you may not actually feel it much. Its what happens after that hurts. When the nerve is pinched off long enough, it slowly dies of oxygen starvation. As it does this, the nerve tends to send stray and random signals to the brain. Depending one which random signals the dying nerve sends, thats what your brain registers as "burning", "stinging", etc pain signals. Depending on the specific nerve being pinched, this can lead the brain to think the pain is originating in your leg, hip, thigh etc when in fact the damage is near the spine.
Thus the pain is real the the cause and location are completely illusory. That was a hard one to accept when I was in the throws of an attack but in my cold logical heart I knew it was true. You look at your leg and it looks like it always does but what your mind reports is it feels like it was literally set on fire...the hurt is so real, the pain is so real, nothing can dissuade you from the idea that your leg is literally on fire, flames, smoke the whole schmear.
Now the problem with 99% of the painkillers out there, they are meant to work on actual damage, not illusory pain such as what sciatica produces. As such, if you actually had burned your leg, the opiates very well might help a great deal. Because this is only in your mind, the opiates have nothing to work with and so end up doing nothing for you. You could take 10x the normal dosage and aside from maybe putting you to sleep but you will hurt just as much.
Now for nerve pain docs love to prescribe Neurontin, something like "gabepentin" or something in generic. The problem is it takes a very specific dose of Neurontin to be effective at all and the only way to find that magic dose is to try you on various and seemingly random doses for up to three weeks at a time to see if they work...and the sciatica pain? That shit is hurting right NOW, like every breath you take can be agony. And they want you to be patient for months to find a solution.
The kicker is sciatica attacks tend to go away long before they figure out the Neurontin dose. So thanks for nothing guys.
What to do?
Well as it happens, I know all about high dose CBD and dementia/LBD symptoms...but the truth is, it was a sciatica attack that lead me to CBD in the first place. Sciatica had kept me laid up in bed for nearly three weeks when some research picked up reports that high dose CBD really helped. I was desperate so sent the missus to the dispensary and she came back with various CBD products and after trying only one, Ringos Circus extract, 2 minutes later and the pain was gone, off like a freaking switch and I was comfortable for the first time in weeks. This stuff really works.
In case you didn't know, sciatica is worse for dementia patients, not because they hurt worse...rather the sciatica pain uses up valuable cognitive resources and actually makes us dumber than we normally would be. Not a state we love all that much.
Well for the longest time my sciatica has been pretty static, lower back, right leg. As of three days ago it is now attacking the left leg and I have been miserable AF. I can barely read let alone understand emails from friends and all I can think of doing is being still like a statue so the pain might at least level off...finally this morning it was just so bad and finally about noon sent the missus off to the dispensary and she came back with two key meds I picked out:
City Trees 1:1 oil cartridge
The first is 1:1 RSO or Rick Simpson Oil. This is meant to be consumed and is effective over a great deal of time but it takes a long time to get going as a result. Thus I had her snag a 1:1 CBD:THC oil cartridge which I knew would be effective within minutes of taking it and would last until the RSO kicks in, to see me the rest of the way through this now-painless day.
Thank the deity. It felt like I was losing my mind there for a while....oh wait...
Kidding aside, this really works. I am here, writing these words with a clarity I was not capable of just a few hours ago......