I personally dont have sciatica, but dull chronic annoying lower back pain (there are days i cant tie my shoelaces). I am young like you too, which sucks. Only 22 y.o
Thing is, that 5 out of 10 adults will have a bulging disc in their mri’s and wont have the slightest of pain. So that confuses the matter.
Only thing that works for completely alleviating my pain is chiro work. My chiro uses the activator method, and however crazy it may seem, my pain vanishes every time i visit him. Unfortunately it comes back every time i train again. I dont know how the activator works, i dont believe in the whole subluxation theory , i believe its more of a release method (like some sort of trigger point myofascial release, and thus the nerve stops getting pinched or sth)
Surgery should really be the last option man. Dont despair and run through all the conservative means first (chiro, ART, mckenzie extensions, massage).
The really depressing thing is that the annulus fibrosis is avascular , and really it has no healing proporties like muscle or bone. It cant regenerate.
Though it may dry out and recede somewhat even with no surgery at all