Treatment For Pinched Nerve

The treatment for pinched nerve in the lower back is usually symptom related. The back pain is the primary symptom that causes the patient to seek professional help. Because pain relief is the desired goal, treatment is directed at pain reduction.

Most often if care is sought from a medical doctor the treatment approach will be rest and some type of medication. These drugs are prescribed with the intention of reducing inflammation (anti-inflammatories), relaxing muscles or killing the pain.

These have little or no effect on curing a pinched nerve.

After several weeks of this type of treatment for pinched nerve, if no relief is found you will probably be referred to a surgeon for more specialized care and possibly a surgical procedure will be recommended. When a pinched nerve heals it does so regardless of any drug prescribed.

Surgery has a very poor outcome record and one should be very cautious before submitting to these procedures.

However, if the pain is severe or intractable, or there are serious neurological symptoms such as paralysis, loss of bladder or bowel control and paresthesias surgery will most likely be your best option.

When symptoms are not severe enough to warrant surgery you may be advised by your medical physicians to continue with medications indefinitely and/or you may be referred to a physical therapist or a chiropractor.

I can recall when medical doctors would never refer a patient to a chiropractor even when their treatment approach failed. However, most of today's medical doctors now recognize and appreciate the positive results that chiropractic has in the treatment of lower back pain and other conditions and will not hesitate to refer to a doctor of chiropractic.

The physical therapist will attempt to treat a pinched nerve with various therapies which may include:

  • exercise
  • stretching
  • electrical stimulation
  • ultrasound
  • heat and ice

Today's physical therapist are relying less on electrical therapies and are now using a more physical approach when treating lower back conditions, including a pinched nerve, and are having more success than they used to.

Your choice for treatment of pinched nerve, however, should be a chiropractor. Chiropractors can do everything a physical therapist does plus perform spinal adjustments, x-rays and order special testing procedures. A chiropractor is actually a specialist of the spine and should be your doctor of first choice when seeking professional help for lower back pain and pinched nerves.

He or she will take x-rays and analyze the structure of your spine looking for disc problems, joint arthritis and other spinal conditions.

But their expertise is evaluating and treating the spine with special emphasis on misalignments and joint fixations and its relationship to your spinal muscles which would have adverse effects of your nervous system. Collectively these are known as spinal subluxations.

They should also focus not only on your spine but your entire body structure and function.

This evaluation will include the structure and function of your feet. Chiropractors recognize that your foundation (feet) can greatly impact the rest of your body especially your spine.

Within the chiropractic profession there are many techniques utilized. What you will find is that no two chiropractors practice identically. Some focus strictly on the spine what others take a more global or comprehensive approach.

Being a chiropractor myself with over 33 years of clinical experience, I personally believe that a comprehensive approach that not only focuses on the spine but also addresses all structural and functional deficits will serve the patient best in the long-term.

7 Things You Need to Do When Treating a Pinched Nerve

Any treatment for pinched nerve should address these issues:

  1. Foot structure and function as well as footwear evaluation.
  2. Muscle assessment -- correcting any imbalances noted in strength, flexibility and endurance.
  3. Trigger point evaluation with treatment directed at not only suppression of active trigger points but elimination and prevention of such.
  4. Weight management -- being overweight or obese is a major risk factor for a pinched nerve.
  5. Spine evaluation with treatment of subluxations were found.
  6. Posture correction with advice regarding city, sleeping, standing.
  7. Nutritional assessment -- correcting deficiencies, nutrient imbalances and recommending supplements that have anti-inflammatory properties without the side effects associated with drugs.

Can Pinched Nerve Be Cured?

Most of the time treatment for pinched nerve, except for drugs, will attempt to reduce the pressure sufficiently to permit the body to heal. The body has amazing healing and adaptive properties that if given the chance will.

However, not every case of lower back pain caused by pinched nerve will improve or heal by itself or with non-surgical treatments. In these rare cases surgery may not only be an option it may be your only recourse.

Always seek the services of a health care provider of your choice for all your lower back pains and symptoms.

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