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How can you get better sleep with piriformis syndrome?

Piriformis syndrome is a condition that involves the sciatic nerve. This nerve becomes inflamed by a muscle in the buttocks called the piriformis muscle. The nerve becomes inflamed as a result of the muscle compressing it. One study found that about 17% of patients with low back pain had an irritated nerve from piriformis syndrome. This condition can become disruptive in everyday life, including during sleep. Many patients with piriformis syndrome struggle to sleep comfortably through the night. That is why treatment is so important. Want to learn more about the causes, symptoms, and treatments available for this condition? Keep reading below.

What are the causes of piriformis syndrome?

There are a few different reasons that a person might develop piriformis syndrome. Determining the most likely cause of your condition is necessary to find the best treatment. Some possible causes of piriformis syndrome include an injury to the nerve or muscle, scar tissue on the piriformis muscle, swelling, and anything else that can compress the nerve running through the buttocks.

What are the symptoms of piriformis syndrome?

Hoping to gain a clearer understanding of piriformis syndrome and how it can affect someone’s daily life? Take a look below. We’ll list some of the most common symptoms that may appear.

  • Pain in the buttocks and down the leg — One of the most common symptoms that a person with piriformis syndrome might experience is pain in their buttocks that may even spread down through their legs. 
  • Numbness in the buttocks and down the leg — Another common symptom is numbness in the buttocks or legs. If someone doesn’t experience much nerve pain, they might have a lack of feeling in that area altogether. 
  • Tingling in the buttocks and down the leg — It’s also common for someone to experience a tingling sensation that travels down the leg or stays centered in the buttocks. 

What are some ways you can improve your sleep if you have piriformis syndrome?

Piriformis syndrome can affect how comfortably you sleep throughout the night. Some people with this condition may get little or poor sleep because of their pain and discomfort. Take a look below at some of the ways that can improve how you sleep if you have piriformis syndrome. Several of these methods are designed to help relieve nerve compression and reduce pain without the use of drugs.

  • Consult with a virtual physical therapist — If you are looking to improve your sleep at night because your peripheral syndrome causes you pain and discomfort, you may benefit from consulting a virtual physical therapist. Virtual physical therapy uses exercise to help patients minimize undesirable symptoms. It can be a great treatment option for those who have sciatic nerve pain.
  • Try sleeping flat on your back — If you’re struggling to sleep at night because of your peripheral syndrome, one of the ways you may be able to improve your symptoms is by sleeping flat on your back. This sleeping position is considered one of the best for those who have this type of nerve pain. 
  • Try a more supportive pillow —  Another way you can improve your sleep if you have piriformis syndrome is by using a more supportive pillow. Sometimes the pillows that we use May contribute to nerve compression because they don’t provide enough support. You may want to consider trying a new, more supportive pillow at night or perhaps even an orthotic pillow.
  • Do some regular stretching — One of the ways you may be able to improve your sleep if you’re dealing with piriformis syndrome is by performing regular stretching. Stretching can help relieve muscle tension which has been known to contribute to the compression of the piriformis nerve in some cases.

Why choose Agile Virtual Physical Therapy to improve how you sleep at night with piriformis syndrome?

We understand that going to regular in-person physical therapy sessions can be a serious time commitment. When you consider the time it takes to drive to and from your sessions, the length of the sessions themselves, and other related factors, in-person PT can be tedious. Fortunately, getting the care you need doesn’t have to be. 

You may not feel up to going to in-person physical therapy if you’re dealing with regular lower back, buttock, or leg pain, or you may not have a reliable source of transportation. Virtual physical therapy is a time-efficient and effective treatment option for those who struggle to manage their piriformis syndrome. We know that when you’re dealing with nerve pain, it can be hard to make regular appointments in a clinic. Virtual PT can be done from the convenience of your own home. It requires nothing other than a stable internet connection and a device with a video camera. You’ll be able to meet with a qualified physical therapy professional who can lead you through each session at home. You can get the right treatment for your nerve pain without needing to sacrifice any time outside of your session. The at-home care you need for your piriformis syndrome is just a click away.

Agile Virtual Physical Therapy offers more than 400 licensed clinicians. We’re committed to providing effective PT care through our telehealth platform. At Agile Virtual PT, we provide services in 45 U.S. states and free virtual screenings

At Agile Virtual Physical Therapy, we have experienced professionals who are qualified to create a personalized plan with you containing at-home physical therapy exercises customized for your age and fitness level.

Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment to get started treating your piriformis syndrome today so you can improve how you sleep tomorrow.