If you have unexplained pain or other problems, you may have a pinched nerve. That’s when something presses against a nerve in your body. It can interfere with the nerve’s function. Nerves can be pinched anywhere in the body but they are common in the spine and the wrist.
Unexplained pain or symptoms may be caused by a pinched nerve. Spinal nerve roots exit your spinal canal through small openings. Many other joints have similarly small spaces in which the nerve flows. If these nerve spaces get narrowed, the structures can compress or pinch the nerve.
Nerves can become pinched in many ways, including poor posture, spinal misalignment, repetitive motion, arthritis, spinal disc herniations, and traumatic injury.
Symptoms depend on which nerve is involved and how severely it is being pinched. Common symptoms include pain, numbness, weakness and tingling. These sensations can be felt where the nerve is being pinched or in the body part to which the nerve flows. For example, a pinched lumbar spinal nerve may cause symptoms in the low back (the site of the pinching) or in your buttock, leg, or foot (where the nerve travels).
Care and Management
If the cause of the pinched nerve is not addressed, the nerve could suffer permanent damage and the symptoms could persist. Treatment by a chiropractor or physical therapist can help many causes of pinched nerves. More serious pinched nerve conditions may require medication or surgery.