5 Ways your Chiropractor can help with a Pinched Nerve

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Can a Chiropractor Help With a Pinched Nerve?

A pinched nerve or nerve compression occurs when the surrounding tissues, such as bones, cartilage, muscles, or tendons, put too much pressure on the nerve, resulting in discomfort, weakness, tingling, or numbness.

Many people will experience a compressed nerve physically at some point in their lifetime, which may cause significant pain and may even have a negative effect on one’s physical capability. 

Many different reasons can cause a nerve to be crushed or pinched, but the musculoskeletal system is usually the primary reason. The chiropractic adjustment by a chiropractor is frequently one of the finest options for treating this issue because it is a musculoskeletal disease.

Several reasons may cause a nerve to be pinched or crushed, such as an accident, bad posture, repeated motion, or inflammation of the nerve’s surrounding tissue. The neck and back regions are more prone to this issue, although it can practically affect any part of the body. 

A nerve may get pinched or compressed if the joints or bones move out of place. In addition, swelling or inflammation of soft tissues, such as muscles and tendons, may put unnecessary strain on surrounding nerves. 

If you think you may have a pinched nerve, it is necessary to get checked out and treated as soon as possible. A pinched nerve is a condition that, if left untreated, can worsen over time and result in further physical issues. 

If you are looking for noninvasive treatments for a pinched nerve, yes, a chiropractor can help with a pinched nerve.

A chiropractor is uniquely qualified to offer assistance for this type of issue, and a patient is likely to see some improvements after the first therapy session. 

The conversation and examination are likely to begin when you see a chiropractor for issues associated with a pinched nerve. 

The chiropractor needs to be aware of your medical history, your lifestyle, and whether you believe the issue was caused by a particular activity or incident. While making a treatment plan for the patient, the chiropractor may need these data.

A chiropractic adjustment is one of the best treatment to cure a pinched nerve, as it targets the pain at its source. Typically, bones, joints, or muscles that are out of alignment or in an improper posture are the main causes of compression or pinching.

The chiropractic adjustment releases the pressure on the nerve by restoring the right position and alignment. This type of treatment deals with the issue at its root cause and can offer the patient immediate and significant relief.

A chiropractor would likely use various techniques to fully restore the patient’s health and reduce the likelihood of a recurrence, although the chiropractic adjustment is likely the most important aspect of the healing process. 

In addition to chiropractic adjustments, a chiropractor may use physical therapy techniques and recommend some exercises and lifestyle changes to the patient which can prevent the nerve from being pinched again in the future.

For various reasons, a chiropractor is particularly well suited to treat a pinched nerve. Their in-depth understanding of the musculoskeletal system aids in the diagnosis and treatment of issues such as nerve compression. 

Additionally, they provide a more comprehensive approach by determining and addressing the cause of the issue in addition to taking actions to treat the immediate problem.

How does a pinched nerve occur?

A pinched nerve can develop in various locations throughout the body. For instance, a nerve root in the lower spine may be compressed by a herniated disc, resulting in pain that travels down the back of your leg, which is similar to how a pinched wrist nerve can cause pain and numbness in your hand and fingers (carpal tunnel syndrome).

A majority of patients recover from a pinched nerve within a few days or weeks with rest and other conservative therapy. Surgery may occasionally be required to treat pinched nerve discomfort.

When the tissues around a nerve put too much pressure (compression) on it, it becomes pinched.

This tissue may occasionally be a bone or cartilage, for example, a herniated spinal disc is compressing a nerve root. In other circumstances, it may be caused by a muscle or tendon.

In case of carpal tunnel syndrome, numerous tissues, such as swelling tendon sheaths inside the tunnel, expanded bone that narrows the tunnel, or a thickened and degenerative ligament, may be to blame for compressing the median nerve.

Tissue compression of a nerve or multiple nerves can result from various disorders, including:

  • Injury 
  • Arthritis in the wrist or rheumatoid arthritis
  • Stress caused by tedious labor 
  • Hobbies or athletic pursuits 
  • Obesity 
  • Joint dislocation

In most cases, no long-term harm is caused if a nerve is pinched for a brief period. Nerve function resumes once the pressure is released. However, persistent pressure can result in chronic pain and irreversible nerve damage.

What are the risk factors?

Your chance of developing a pinched nerve may be affected by the following elements: 

  • Sex: Because of their smaller carpal tunnels, women are more likely to acquire carpal tunnel syndrome.
  • Bone growths: Bone spurs may be caused by trauma or a condition like osteoarthritis that thickens the bones. Bone spurs can limit the space where your nerves travel, stiffen the spine, and even squeeze nerves.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis: Rheumatoid arthritis-related inflammation, particularly in your joints, can squeeze nerves.
  • Thyroid conditions: Carpal tunnel syndrome is more likely to affect those who have thyroid conditions.

Other danger signs include: 

  • Diabetes: It increases the risk for nerve compression.
  • Overuse: Work on an assembly line and other repetitive hand, wrist, or shoulder motion-intensive hobbies increase the risk for pinched nerves.
  • Obesity: Nerves may become more compressed by excess weight.
  • Pregnancy: Your nerves may become compressed if you gain weight and water during pregnancy.
  • Prolonged rest in bed: Nerve compression risk can increase with extended lying down.

Where might a pinched nerve occur? 

Unfortunately, those who are susceptible to them can develop them virtually anywhere in their body where nerves are present. However, back pain is a common complaint. Other areas include shoulder, neck, wrist, etc.

What are the symptoms of a pinched nerve?

Signs and symptoms of a pinched nerve include: 

  • Changed in sensation or loss of sensation or numbness in the nerve’s supply area
  • Sharp, agonizing, or burning discomfort that could be radiating
  • Sensations of tingling and pins and needles
  • Weakening of the afflicted muscles
  • Recurring sensation that a hand or foot has “fallen asleep”

When you’re sleeping, your pinched nerve-related issues can be worse.

How is a pinched nerve diagnosed?

Your physician will inquire about your symptoms and perform a physical check-up.

You may go through certain tests if your doctor thinks you have a pinched nerve. These tests could include: 

  • Blood test to check your thyroid or fasting blood sugar levels. 
  • Back tap (lumbar puncture) wherein cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), which surrounds your spinal cord, is sampled. Laboratory may receive the CSF and examine it for inflammation or infection.
  • X-rays to demonstrate the arrangement of the bones and reveal whether there is any constriction or other damage that might result in a pinched nerve.
  • Nerve conduction study where electrodes are positioned on your skin to analyze electrical nerve impulses and the functionality of your muscles and nerves.
  • Electromyography analyzes electrical activity of your muscles both during contractions and at rest.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging can help detect the cause of nerve root compression.
  • Ultrasonography shows images of internal body structures using high-frequency sound waves. It is useful for identifying syndromes of nerve compression, such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

Traditional treatments for a pinched nerve

Resting the affected area is the most usually advised remedy for a pinched nerve. Any activity that creates compression or makes it worse needs to be stopped as instructed by your doctor.

You may need to immobilize the affected area using a splint, collar, or brace, depending on where the pinched nerve is located. Because wrists commonly flex and expand as you sleep, your doctor may advise wearing a splint both during the day and at night if you have carpal tunnel syndrome.

  • Physical exercise

To relieve pressure on the nerve, a physical therapist might make you do exercises that strengthen and stretch the muscles in the affected area. Additionally, the physical therapist might advise altering the activities that irritate the nerve.

  • Medications 

Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs [NSAIDs]) and naproxen sodium (Aleve) are two examples of NSAIDs that can reduce pain. Nerve-associated pain is frequently treated with anticonvulsants like gabapentin (Neurontin) and tricyclic drugs like nortriptyline (Pamelor) and amitriptyline.

Corticosteroids can be administered orally or intravenously and may help reduce discomfort and inflammation.

  • Surgery

Your doctor could advise surgery to relieve the strain on the nerve if the pinched nerve doesn’t get better after several weeks to a few months of conservative therapies.

How can chiropractic care help reduce pinched nerve pain?

A chiropractic adjustment is one of the noninvasive treatment options if you have a pinched nerve. Chiropractic treatment is a safe, healthy, and natural way to support your body’s natural healing processes. 

Chiropractic care would prevent the need for pointless procedures or hazardous nerve-pinching treatments. Chiropractic care allows your body to function normally by using gentle adjustments. You must give your body the chance to cure itself.

Here is why a chiropractor can help:

  1. They are experts in pinched nerves

While studying the spine, chiropractors also learn a lot about how it affects the nervous system during their education. The fundamental tenet of chiropractic care is that the body functions holistically, with the spine regulating the neurological system, which communicates with the rest of the body. 

The purpose of adjustments is to eliminate nerve interference in the body, which can lead to health problems and prevent your body from functioning at its best. This indicates that chiropractors have a thorough understanding of the nerve system.

A chiropractor could correctly diagnose you if you have pinched nerve symptoms after knowing your symptoms and medical history and performing a physical examination. This will enable them to identify which spinal segments may need to be modified to alleviate your discomfort and which nerves may be affected.

  1. Primary causes of pain are addressed by chiropractors

People often desire relief right away when they are in agony. That is often the case with pinched nerve pain; therefore, you could be inclined to use painkillers as a remedy. 

Painkillers hide your symptoms rather than addressing the cause, which can help you cope in the short term. Your nerve would keep getting pinched, and the situation might get worse over time, causing greater discomfort or significant issues.

To relieve symptoms and heal the injury or problem, chiropractic adjustment for pinched nerves identifies the damaged nerve and uses spinal manipulation to release the compression. 

When a bone, joint, or muscle is misplaced or shifted from its normal position, it can cause pinched nerve discomfort. To relieve the pressure on the nerve and prevent worsening of the condition, a chiropractor can perform an adjustment that puts these structures back in their correct positions.

  1. Chiropractors may offer services beyond adjustments:

While adjustments and chiropractic therapy are the primary treatments for pinched nerves, chiropractors may also use other forms of care as necessary. They frequently use elements of physical therapy to bolster any weak muscles. You could be instructed to continue your pinched nerve treatment in the doctor’s office and with gentle exercises at home. 

You might also receive recommendations for lifestyle modifications, such as diet or exercise, that could fasten the healing process, depending on the cause of the injury.

  1. Chiropractic care also focuses on prevention:

A chiropractor’s main aim would be to relieve your current discomfort while also preventing further injuries of the same type which can entail methods to apply in daily life.

Poor posture and jobs that require us to spend extended periods of time in front of screens are two major causes of pinched nerves. Chiropractors can assist in developing a strategy to enhance your posture, include activity into your day, or alter the structure and siting of your office.

Chiropractors would search for areas of your body that are weak if you had an injury that caused pinched nerve discomfort. When a joint is dislocated, for example, pinched nerves can occasionally occur; after the initial incident, these injuries become more likely to occur. To prevent future injuries that can cause pinched nerves, chiropractors may work to strengthen joints and develop prevention strategies.

  1. Serious injuries can be ruled out by chiropractors

The most common cause of a pinched nerve is misalignments, which is an easy problem to solve. The symptoms of a pinched nerve, though, may indicate something more serious, or the injury may have worsened to the point where more aggressive treatment is required. 

The chiropractor can tell during your examination whether a pinched nerve is more serious than it appears to be and will recommend you to the appropriate medical professionals to prevent further problems. 

How can PEMF therapy help treat pinched nerves?


Pulsed electromagnetic field therapy or PEMF therapy has emerged as the ideal option to pain medication and other modalities.

As you have portable PEMF devices that can be used at home, you won’t need to schedule doctor visits or take time out of work to travel to another location for care.

Although this therapy has no known negative effects, you should consult your doctor first to make sure it is safe for you given your unique medical history. Several chiropractors also offer PEMF therapy in their clinics. 

Inflammation, discomfort, and swelling can all be reduced with PEMF therapy, and when these issues are resolved, the nerve compression will also be reduced.

Although every person will respond differently to this treatment, using a PEMF therapy mat seems to help people with nerve compression discomfort.

Visit the products page to find out more about PEMF therapy and how you may relieve nerve compression.


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