What is a Pinched Nerve

A “pinched nerve” is a common term used in chiropractic clinics across the country, and it is usually one that is not well defined. In medical terms a pinched or compressed nerve occurs when force is applied to a nerve or bundle of nerves by bone, ligaments, tendons, or muscles. This generally leads to pain, numbness, and tingling.

Historically when a patient comes into our office with a pinched nerve they are feeling pain and tightness along the neck, shoulder blade, or lower back. It can also happen in areas of the body where the nerve travels through a smaller tunnel of soft tissues such as the elbow, wrist, or knee joints.

What Causes a Pinched Nerve?

Pinched Nerves usually occur due to prolonged muscle imbalances from poor posture, overuse injuries, or accidents and falls. The most important part of treating a pinched nerve is to go through an examination to correctly diagnose the actual cause. Pinched nerves can be caused by the following:

  •  Disc herniation   
  • Tendinopathy 
  • Stenosis
  • Muscle imbalances·    
  • Tunnel syndromes

Is a Pinched Nerve the same as a "Kink" in your back?

You may have been into a chiropractors office and been told that you are having a pinched nerve and that is why your shoulder or upper trap is hurting. Or they informed you that bones out of place were kinking "nerve flow" like a garden hose. These are common misconceptions that lead to the mischaracterization of a Pinched Nerve. Most people who come into our office who have a "kink" in their neck or lower back are feeling this due to inflammation from a trigger point in a muscle closely located to a nerve bundle causing tightness and pain.

Common Treatment Methods for a Pinched nerve

-A thorough and detailed evaluation

-Treatment of injured soft tissues (dry needling, A.R.T, class IV laser, IASTM and cupping)

-Restore joint mobility and increase range of motion

-Strengthen and stabilize (DNS and exercise rehabilitation)