If You're Experiencing Right Leg Pain
If you're experiencing right leg pain and don't remember having injured the leg, the first question that might pop into your mind is “Why am I experiencing right leg pain, and not pain in both legs?” or “Why the right leg?” “Why not the left leg?”
Right Leg Or Left Leg – Does It Matter? - If there is a pain is your abdomen, the side the pain happens to be on can sometimes have a great deal of significance, since a disorder affecting one of the internal organs can often cause pain to be felt in a specific area, either in the right side, in the left side, in the front, in the back, or all over. A pain in the leg is a little different story. In our legs we have bones, muscles, and nerves, and in that respect the right leg is not all that different from the left leg. It would seem then, that barring injury, if one leg hurts, they both should hurt!
Overuse Or Misuse Of Muscles - What then might right leg pain signify? There are a couple of things that come to mind, aside from the obvious - an injury to the leg. One is potential cause is overuse or misuse, and the other is nerve damage or a nerve disorder. Quite often one leg feels sore and the other doesn't because we've been engaged in some activity where an added strain has been placed on one leg only, and the muscles in that leg have been used in a manner they aren't used do. A somewhat trivial example would be that of standing on one leg for a very long time when you're not used to doing so. If you’ve been standing on your right leg and resting your left leg, your right leg may hurt the next day, while your left leg will feel fine.
A more realistic example would be that of favoring a foot that hurts. If you have a sore left foot and you are favoring it, you'll often put added pressure on the right leg muscles. Later on you'll begin to experience a pain in the right leg. We quite often create pain in certain muscles by favoring some other part of the body. In most cases, that pain or discomfort usually goes away fairly quickly.
The Sciatic Nerve Is Often The Culprit - Unless the pain is the result of something like running, a common cause is sciatica. Sciatica is a condition in which the sciatic nerve has either been damaged, or as is most often the case, it has somehow become irritated. It is often in the nerve roots, which come out of the spinal cord to form the sciatic nerve, where the source of the problem lies. These nerve roots can become irritated if a disc in the spinal column becomes ruptured or herniated. That in fact is what most often causes sciatic pain, or sciatica. Sciatic pain will travel down the back, through the buttocks, and usually down only one leg. If the pain in your right leg is sciatic pain, your left leg will most likely feel just fine.
What is somewhat ironical is that this type of leg pain, sciatic pain, is not the result of any damage in the leg itself. It's an example of the nervous system telling the brain that something is wrong, but is sending pain signals suggesting something may be wrong in parts of the body that are perfectly fine. This type of pain is often called referred pain.
Seldom A Problem With Younger People - Sciatic pain, or sciatica, is something that younger people usually don't experience, unless they've suffered an injury to the spinal column that has damaged or pinched sciatic nerve roots. Sciatica most often affects middle-aged and older people, and is usually the result of general wear and tear in the body. Sciatic pain generally does not last long. You may have this type of leg pain for a day or two, and then it will go away. It may return at some later time, or it may not, or it may become a chronic condition.
One Leg Is Sometimes Better Than Two - One of the symptoms sometimes felt when sciatica is the cause of leg pain is numbness or tingling in the leg or the foot. If you have pain, numbness, and tingling in one leg and foot, it's most likely sciatica. If the pain and numbness is being experienced in both legs or feet, it is quite possibly a circulatory issue which could be much more serious. Pain in both legs could also simply be muscle soreness due to overuse, but overuse does not usually bring about a sensation of numbness.
In any event, having pain in only one leg, whether its right leg pain or left leg pain, most often indicates sciatica. Sciatica is usually easily treated. It is more of a symptom than a disorder. It's the disorder that causes sciatica in the first place, a pinched nerve or a slipped disc, that needs to be treated. As for the leg itself, it's probably as good as it ever was.