What is a pinched nerve? What happens when there’s a pinched nerve in your neck? Can a chiropractor fix a pinched nerve? Before we get to the answers, read on and see if you can relate to any of these situations…
Have you experienced waking up one morning, and all of a sudden, you felt a tingling sensation in your fingers or hands that could pass a 4 out of 5 in terms of pain intensity? You then dismissed it as “just a pulled muscle” because you slept the night before with your neck turned to one side. As your day progressed, though, you noticed that the pain only got worse.
Perhaps you have also worked for crazy long hours in front of your computer. You started at 8 am and worked nonstop to meet a deadline. By 8 pm, you stood up from your chair and then felt excruciating pain in your lower back.
These are both examples when a pinched nerve arises.
What’s a pinched nerve?
A pinched nerve refers to the painful, tingling sensation or numbness caused by pressure on a nerve. It develops when a nerve is compressed or is experiencing pressure, thus, unable to send periodic signals to the brain. It’s like a water hose that doesn’t push out water because you stepped on the part of the hose.
A pinched nerve can happen for several reasons, as certain activities and movements trigger a compressed nerve. Poor posture while sitting, for one, can cause a pinched nerve. Injuries during a sports activity can likewise lead to a pinched nerve.
As your body’s nerves extend from the brain to the spinal cord, they send signals from head to toe. However, when the nerve is under pressure, signals get disrupted. As a result, a very painful signal is sent to the brain, potentially leaving your body or the affected part to experience a tingling sensation or numbness.
What can you do to relieve pinched nerve tingling?
Just like a kinked wire that needs to be straightened out, the pinched nerve should be “unkinked.” Basically, the nerve needs to be released to relieve the pressure, and there are some natural and practical ways to avoid and fix a pinched nerve.
Use an ergonomic chair
The prolonged sitting that eventually brings about poor posture is one of the reasons for a person to experience a pinched nerve. Having an ergonomic chair helps minimize this. In some cases, people use a standing desk, where it has a built-in hydraulic feature that allows you to lift and lower your work surface whenever you want to, so you’re not stuck in just one sitting position the whole time.
Do some yoga and light exercises
A few stretches daily and some yoga may help relieve the pressure in the affected nerve area. Be careful, though, not to stretch extensively, as this may worsen the symptoms.
Apply a splint
Whenever possible, apply a splint on the area of the pinched nerve. Temporarily immobilizing it can help the nerve to heal. This can be applied when there’s a pinched nerve in the wrist to help prevent further damage.
Alternate warm and cold compress
This can be done where there’s inflammation in the affected area. Simply apply an iced pack on the swollen or inflamed area, then alternately, after 72 hours, apply a warm compress to relieve the pressure.
Get some sleep
A compressed nerve can heal on its own when you allow it to. When you’re able to or when you can tolerate the pain, you can simply rest and sleep to let the affected nerve heal on its own.
How about a chiropractor? Can a chiropractor fix a pinched nerve?
If the nerve remains pinched even after applying some remedies mentioned, it is advised to stop any movement immediately to avoid further damage to the affected nerve.
It may be advisable to have a chiropractor observe and assess the condition at this point.
Upper cervical chiropractors apply unique techniques to adjust the neck. Basically, by doing so, they release the pressure from the affected nerve area, allowing the pinched nerve to heal.
Doctors of chiropractic correct the underlying musculoskeletal problems to promote healing and recovery. For example, if you have a pinched nerve in your neck, the chiropractor will assess any alignment issues across your upper spine and try to understand the exact problem you’re having. They always take a more personal and individualized approach when establishing the relief intervention.
You will observe that the services of an upper cervical chiropractor share the same objective: to restore the alignment and balance to the spine and the entire musculoskeletal system.
For the most part, the therapy intervention upper cervical chiropractors employ promotes progressive improvements. With this approach, many patients experience a significant improvement in their comfort levels, balance, and mobility.
As for the pinched nerve, depending on the patient in question, improvement likewise increases with each session, veering them away from any potentially addictive, prescription pain reliever drugs.
Again, can a chiropractor fix a pinched nerve? Yes, and we suggest finding an upper cervical doctor near your area to experience relief in no time.