7 Simple Strategies To Relieve Pinched Nerve Pain

7 Simple Strategies To Relieve Pinched Nerve Pain

A pinched or compressed nerve can cause incessant pain that ranges from nagging to debilitating, interfering with your work performance and quality of life. Nerves typically glide smoothly between other structures in your body, sending and receiving messages to and from the brain. Nerves can become entrapped when other structures like bones, muscles or connective tissues come in contact with them, causing painful friction and compression.

Causes of Pinched Nerve Pain

Many things can contribute to pinched nerve pain, including:

  • Everyday stress
  • Poor sleeping posture
  • Poor posture while sitting or standing
  • Trauma from an accident or athletic injury
  • Muscle overuse from work or exercise
  • Inefficient lifting technique
  • Excess body weight
  • Being out of shape
Causes of Pinched Nerve Pain

How to Relieve a Pinched Nerve

If you think your pain is due to a pinched nerve, there are some things you can do right away to relieve pressure and reduce pain.

  • Rest and avoid pain-causing activities: Lying down can help reduce the stress load on your muscles and joints, giving nerves a break from pressure. Activities like sports or heavy lifting that often contribute to nerve pressure should be temporarily avoided.
  • Use ice to reduce inflammation. A herniated and inflamed vertebral disc can put pressure on the nerve root, causing pain. Apply a bag of frozen vegetables or an ice pack directly on the painful site for 15-minute intervals throughout the day, to numb pain and reduce inflammation.
  • Adjust your posture. Being more aware of the way you align your body while standing, sitting and walking can help relieve nerve pressure. Be especially aware of your head and neck position when using electronic devices. Try placing a pillow between your knees while sleeping to better align your spine.
  • Reduce time spent sitting. Sitting for long hours on end can weaken the muscles that support your spine, setting you up for nerve pain. Try standing at your workstation, and take frequent activity breaks. When relaxing at home, try sitting on the floor instead of slouching on the couch.
  • Take time to stretch. Pinched nerves are often caused by tight muscles and connective tissues. Regular stretching can relax soft tissue tension, relieving pressure on your nerves. Make an extra effort to stretch your neck and low back periodically throughout the day.
  • Apply heat. Having a hot bath or shower, or using a heating pad for pinched nerve pain can help muscles relax, taking pressure off your nerves.
  • Take NSAIDs. Over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen or naproxen can help to numb pain and reduce inflammation so you can rest. However, do not exceed the recommended dosage, as those medications can damage your liver.
How to Relieve a Pinched Nerve

While self-treatment can temporarily relieve pinched nerve pain, it does not get at the underlying cause. To eliminate pain at its source, you should seek professional help. A chiropractor or physical therapist can help identify the source of your pinched nerve pain and provide treatment to eliminate it for good.

TeleHealth is here!

Get all the benefits of physical therapy and chiropractic care via safe and effective online sessions, all from the privacy and convenience of your home, office or hotel room. Never miss a session, and keep moving toward your goals from anywhere in the world.

Relieve Pinched Nerve Pain in NYC

  • DNS (dynamic neuromuscular stabilization)
  • ISM (integrated system model approach)
  • Clinical Pilates
  • Postural retraining
  • Myofascial release techniques
  • Acupuncture
  • ESWT (extracorporeal shock wave therapy)
  • Neurac Redcord therapy
  • Pinched nerve ice or heat therapy
  • Other advanced treatment methods

Watch our video to hear Dr. Kalika talk about pinched nerve pain treatment at NYDNRehab.

About the Author

Dr. Lev Kalika is clinical director of NYDNRehab, located in Manhattan. Lev Kalika is the author of multiple medical publications and research, and an international expert in the field of rehabilitative sonography, ultrasound guided dry needling and sports medicine Dr. Kalika works with athletes, runners, dancers and mainstream clients to relieve pain, rehabilitate injuries, enhance performance and minimize the risk of injuries. His clinic features some of the most technologically advanced equipment in the world, rarely found in a private clinic.

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In this instance, an athlete was originally diagnosed with minor quadriceps muscle strain and was treated for four weeks, with unsatisfactory results. When he came to our clinic, the muscle was not healing, and the patients’ muscle tissue had already begun to atrophy.

Upon examination using MSUS, we discovered that he had a full muscle thickness tear that had been overlooked by his previous provider. To mitigate damage and promote healing, surgery should have been performed immediately after the injury occurred. Because of misdiagnosis and inappropriate treatment, the patient now has permanent damage that cannot be corrected.

The most important advantage of Ultrasound over MRI imaging is its ability to zero in on the symptomatic region and obtain imaging, with active participation and feedback from the patient. Using dynamic MSUS, we can see what happens when patients contract their muscles, something that cannot be done with MRI. From a diagnostic perspective, this interaction is invaluable.

Dynamic ultrasonography examination demonstrating
the full thickness tear and already occurring muscle atrophy
due to misdiagnosis and not referring the patient
to proper diagnostic workup

Demonstration of how very small muscle defect is made and revealed
to be a complete tear with muscle contraction
under diagnostic sonography (not possible with MRI)

image

Complete tear of rectus femoris
with large hematoma (blood)

image

Separation of muscle ends due to tear elicited
on dynamic sonography examination

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