The Best Essential Oils For Sciatica Nerve Pain

Sciatica nerve pain is probably one of the worst types of back pain one can experience.  I've had to deal with sciatica pain for years.  The good news is there are essential oils for sciatica and they can help ease the pain!  These essential oils are 100% natural and they do a wonderful job of relieving sciatic nerve pain.  In this article, we will discuss three essential oils that I use and have helped me in the past.


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Essential Oil


Peppermint Essential OIl

Marjoram Essential Oil

Eucalyptus Essential Oil

What In The World Is Sciatica?

Pain associated with nerves often exerts a lot of stress on our bodies.  This is no different for sciatica.  You experience serious pain due to the irritation of the sciatic nerve.  The sciatic nerve originates from where the spine splits to either side of your body, down your legs. 

The nerve goes through much of the pelvis and the buttocks. Extending from the back of each upper leg, it divides at the knee into branches that reach the feet.  Often mistaken for back pain, it's good to know that sciatica is not limited to the back. 

The Mayo Clinic suggests that Sciatic issues most commonly occur from a herniated disc or bone spurs in the spine.

Not all cases of sciatica require you to go under the knife.  Non-operative treatments could last days to a few weeks.  But chronic sciatica associated with bladder or bowel changes and leg weakness might require surgery. 

Also, know that sciatica is not a medical condition but a symptom.  It is a symptom of an ailment involving the sciatic nerve.  

Sciatica nerve pain

What Causes Sciatic Nerve Pain?

The causes of Sciatica are numerous and can vary on the pain scale.  I have experienced pain that was tolerable and it didn't hinder my day to day routines.  With that being said, I have also experienced sciatic pain so severe that I couldn't talk or think straight.  It's times like those that make me want to pull my hair out.

Below is a list of the most common causes of Sciatica.  

Lumbar Bulging Disc or Herniated Disc

This happens when the nucleus breaks through the annulus fibrosus.  It doesn’t matter if a disc herniates or bulges, disc material can push against a nearby nerve root.  This leads to compressed delicate nerve tissue resulting in sciatica.

Herniated Disc vs Normal Disc

Image credit goes to Mayfield Clinic

Lumbar Spinal Stenosis

Here spinal nerve roots branch outward from the spinal cord through passageways called neural foramina.  As a result, leg pain similar to sciatica may occur.  Also, the pain is often positional.  This is brought about by activities like walking or standing.  You can minimize the pain by sitting down.

Lumbar Spinal Stenosis


Sounding like a word out of a Ghostbusters movie, spondylolisthesis is a condition that affects the lumbar spine.  It's defined by one vertebra sliding forward over an adjoining vertebrae.  This often causes sciatic leg pain.  The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons suggests that patients with Spondylolisthesis can improve their symptoms with conservative treatment

Piriformis Syndrome

Piriformis syndrome happens when muscle spasm occurs in the Piriformis muscle.  This compresses the sciatic nerve.  The Journal Of The American Osteopathic Association states that Piriformis Syndrome occurs as a result of an abnormal condition of the piriformis muscle.

Piriformis Syndrome

Trauma To The Spine

Trauma results from close nerve compression as a result of external forces to the sacral or lumbar spinal nerve roots.

Spinal Tumors

These growths can cause sciatica in the lumbar region due to nerve compression.

Can Essential Oils Help Sciatica?

In short, yes.  Essential oils can and do help people with Sciatica.  They have helped me in the past with my sciatic pain when it was bad and I personally know quite a few people that stand by EO's (essential oils).

One thing I do want to say is this:

Use essential oils as a compliment to whatever your doctor prescribes for you.  EO's are meant to be a compliment to wholistic approach to healing and relieving your nerve pain.  This means if a medical professional says that must take certain prescribed medications, then please do what they advise.

Your health and wellbeing are important to me.  I'm just here to suggest what has helped me in the past.  I do not want to steer you into harm's way.

Some essential oils also deal with the root cause of the pain.  For instance, lavender essential oil will help with headache pain.  But it also helps with the stress and anxiety that caused a headache.

These oils are therapeutic.  They contain natural compounds that directly affect the site of the injury or strain, aiding faster relief.  

Essential oils like peppermint and marjoram have analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties.  These contents help reduce the body's pain in response to the injuries suffered.  Several kinds of essential oils exist to treat sciatica pain.

Here they are:

Peppermint Essential Oil

peppermint essential oil helps with nerve pain

This essential oil has both analgesic and stimulating properties that work simultaneously to enhance circulation for body repair and to create a numbing effect on pain.  Also, you can use Peppermint oil to ease sciatic pain as it has a cooling effect on inflammation. 

Peppermint essential oil is also known as liquid ice.  At least that's what my friend called it when she recommended I use it for my nerve pain.  Peppermint contains a compound called menthol, which is responsible for a lot of the benefits. 

Peppermint also contains antispasmodic properties. 

This oil is also known for its anesthetic properties.  Also, several market products like muscle creams, contain peppermint.  The cool feeling helps to soothe irritated sciatic nerve. 

It also helps prevent muscle contractions due to its anti-spasmodic qualities. 

When you experience pain in your lower back and neck, peppermint oil may be just what you need.  Conventional drugs may cause heart problems along with a long list of side effects.  Topical herb remedies like peppermint oil remain a viable alternative.  You're likely to have fewer side effects than with conventional drugs which is always a huge plus in my book.

Using Peppermint Oil For Sciatica Nerve Pain

There are several ways you can use peppermint essence to relieve the pain from Sciatica.

My preferred method is to take a hot bath.  I place 3-5 drops of peppermint essential oil in the water and that usually does the trick.

Another great way to reduce sciatica pain is to massage the oil into the affected area.  Place 3-5 drops into your favorite carrier oil (I like to use almond oil) and gently massage the affected area.  Do this for about 15-20 minutes and you should feel relief shortly after.

Sweet Marjoram Essential Oil

Marjoram Essential Oils For Lower Back Pain

Marjoram Essential Oil is extracted from the marjoram plant.  It’s an herbaceous perennial and a member of the Lamiaceae family.

Marjoram is an effective oil for back pain because it warms, soothes and eases the joints and muscles.  It is also a phenomenal anti-inflammatory and relieves inflammation caused by sciatic-related symptoms. 

Marjoram works quickly to reduce swelling and thus ease the pain.  

The essential oil can help enhance a healthy cardiovascular system, giving your body the necessary strength that it needs to work well. Further, you can add marjoram oil to a soothing massage blend to target tired and stressed muscles.

Having a stressful time? Marjoram oil contains soothing properties that help ease emotions during nerve-racking moments. 

How To Use Marjoram Oil For Sciatica

Marjoram can be used just like peppermint oil as I described above.

It can also be used in a diffuser.

If you're going to use Marjoram oil, it's best to blend it with other essential oils such as peppermint and lavender.  Blending these essential oils will not only have relieve pain but also have a powerful calming effect.

Marjoram Essential Oil Blend Recipe:

  • 2 drops of Marjoram Oil
  • 2 drops of Lavender Oil
  • 2 drops of Peppermint Oil
  • 15 mL of your favorite carrier oil

Gently massage the affected area for about 15-20 minutes and you should notice pain relief soon after.

Eucalyptus Essential Oil

Eucalyptus Essential Oil For Lower Back Pain

Eucalyptus oil, also called the “Nilgiri Tel” in Hindi, is an ingredient that has extensive effects on our overall well-being.  This amazing oil is collected from the eucalyptus tree - from its dried leaves.  These sweet-scented and dried leaves are steam-distilled to extract the oil. 

The oil is a colorless liquid with a powerfully sweet and woody scent. Eucalyptus oil contains 1 8-cineole and a-pinene.  Also, it acts as an antioxidant, with powerful and thorough scavenging activity.

What’s more, Eucalyptus contains anti-inflammatory properties and acts as a natural analgesic. 

Its anti-inflammatory properties make it a valuable medicine for external pain. Patients with tendon and ligament sprains, arthritis, sciatica, muscle pain, and nerve pain use eucalyptus oil to reduce pain. 

How To Use Eucalyptus Essential Oil For Sciatica

For quick relief, massage a few drops of eucalyptus oil on the affected area to reduce the pain.  Make sure you massage evenly.  For chest pain, massage towards the heart.  This helps move the buildup of lactic acid through the lymphatic system.

Since eucalyptus smells so darned good, I also like to use it in a diffuser.  Doing this helps elevate my mood which, in turn, helps me cope with the pain that come with sciatica.


There are many essential oils that can help with sciatica nerve pain.  The three I mentioned in this article are ones that have helped me in the past.

I hope this article finds you well.  Leave a comment below and tell everyone which essential oils work best for you.  Don't forget to share with your friends and others who are in need of this information.

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Marty L.