“The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will instruct his patients in care of the human frame, in diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease.” – Thomas Edison
No one likes pain, but the pain of a pinched nerve can be especially crippling.
A pinched nerve can occur when too much pressure is put on a nerve by surrounding tissues, such as bones, cartilage, muscles, tendons, and – in some cases – even scar tissue. Pinched or entrapped nerves can cause various types of pain and other symptoms, as well.
According to the Mayo Clinic, these include:
- Numbness or decreased sensation in the area supplied by the nerve
- Sharp, aching, or burning pain, which may radiate outward
- Tingling, pins and needles sensations (paresthesia)
- Muscle weakness in the affected area
- Frequent feeling that a foot or hand has “fallen asleep”
Common Treatment for Pinched Nerves
Treating the pain from pinched nerves runs the gamut of visits to chiropractors, physical therapy, prescription medications, and self-medicating with over-the-counter (OTC) drugs. Americans see their doctors every day for help dealing with pinched nerves.
One of the major issues that arises from treating neuropathic, or a pinched nerve, pain with medications is the risk of abuse or addiction. Commonly prescribed medications for treating pinched nerve pain include painkilling gels, lidocaine patches, anticonvulsants, antidepressants, and even powerful opioid painkillers or severe nerve pain.
There are also some non-prescription, OTC treatments for neuropathic pain that may help relieve your symptoms. These include acetaminophen, aspirin, and ibuprofen. There is a risk that someone with chronic pain can rely on these medicines too much, causing other issues.
While OTC medications may help with mild or occasional pain, they’re often not effective with serious nerve pain. However, if your nerve pain is mild, they may be enough on their own to manage your nerve pain.
What Is a Pinched Nerve?
When a nerve becomes pinched by a joint that is out of alignment, or even by a tight muscle, it can cause pain. A pinched nerve is often caused by a combination of joint and soft tissue problems. This is common with joints that have been injured, overused, or out of alignment, and cause irritation and “pinching” of the nearby nerves.
It can also occur because of a whiplash injury, from playing sports, or even sleeping wrong.
Aside from injuries, there are a number of common risk factors for experiencing pinched nerves, according to medical professionals. These include the following:
- Bone spurs
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Thyroid disease
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Prolonged bed rest
Repetitive overuse of certain muscles can do the same thing, leading to pain and other symptoms. Also, as we age and through long-term use, the spine and connective tissues gradually become stiff and weak. And our joints become progressively stiffer and the muscles and soft tissues become more susceptible to injury.
Then, you make the wrong move at the right time by reaching for something or bending over to tie your shoes, and you suddenly get a pinched nerve – and pain.
For many people, prevention can be the best cure, so to speak.
If you feel you are prone to experiencing pinched nerves or have common risk factors, the following measures may help you prevent a pinched nerve:
- Maintain good positioning; don’t cross your legs or lie in any one position for a long time.
- Incorporate strength and flexibility exercises into your regular exercise program.
- Limit repetitive activities and take frequent breaks when engaging in these activities.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
Treating Pinched Nerves With Active Release Technique®
But there is help! Using the therapies within the Active Release Technique®, or ART®, we can treat a pinched nerve effectively and, ultimately, bring relief from the pain. ART® is a patented soft tissue system, or movement-based massage technique, that treats problems with muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia, and nerves.
What can it do?
Headaches, back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, shin splints, shoulder pain, sciatica, plantar fasciitis, knee problems, and tennis elbow are just a few of the pain conditions that can be resolved quickly and permanently with ART®. And most of these conditions all have one important thing in common: they are often a result of overused muscles.
Treatment with Active Release Technique® starts with a physical exam. After we develop a diagnosis based on your history and the examination, treatment can begin.
Because soft tissue injuries from scar tissue cannot be detected by machines or orthopedic tests, ART® functions as a diagnostic tool. We can determine where the adhesions are and how severe the soft tissue injury is, simply by touch.
ART® is generally performed with direct contact with the patient’s skin. We will find the area that needs to be worked on and either have you actively move a body part or move the body part for you. Our contact coupled with your movements is what allows the adhesions to separate.
Pain and Performance Solutions, ART® and Pinched Nerve Relief
For chronic shoulder pain, as with any injury, the first step in recovery is allowing us to get to know you and your pain issues. Once you make your first appointment, we’ll want to learn about your present discomfort as well as any history of discomfort.
After a full examination, we can determine which form of treatment is needed to help you on your road to recovery. As our bodies start to compensate for pain, this can allow you to move on with your day. However, your body can also shift that pain around to compensate for your discomfort and this can lead to other forms of pain.
Getting pinched nerve pain relief with ART® begins when we understand where your pain started. That could mean it started with a previous injury you might have sustained.
Your trust in us is key, as is your honesty. Ultimately, getting your body working properly and healthy is the only way to achieve total recovery. So, don’t hesitate to reach out. We are here to help and will answer any, and all questions that you may have. You can reach us at (707) 636-4404 or by filling out our online contact form.