The term “pinched nerve” is somewhat of a catch-all phrase that is commonly used to describe the pain associated with a variety of conditions from subluxations, to tunnel syndromes to the referred pain from trigger points.
Most of the time, what is called a pinched nerve is actually an irritated, or inflamed nerve where the nerve itself is not actually pinched. In most cases, nerves become irritated and inflamed when the bones, joints or muscles of the spine are not in their proper position, or are not moving properly. This condition is called a “subluxation”, the treatment of which is the specialty of the doctor of chiropractic.
There are instances when nerves do become ‘pinched’, such as in Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Sciatica and Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. In each of these cases, injury, spasm or inflammation of the surrounding muscles and connective tissue causes the nerve to become compressed, resulting in pain. These conditions are referred to as “tunnel syndromes.” Treating tunnel syndromes is more complex than treating a simple spinal subluxation, but they usually respond very well to chiropractic care; especially when combined with other physical therapies, such as exercises and stretches.
Trigger points are very tight “knots” of muscle that form when muscles are either chronically overworked or injured, and are often experienced as a pinching or burning pain. Trigger points will commonly cause pain that radiates to other parts of the body, which is also known as referred pain. The successful treatment of trigger points usually requires a combination of chiropractic care, stretching and a form of deep tissue massage called ‘trigger point therapy.’
It is very important that the cause of any form of pain be properly diagnosed. This is especially important when nerves are affected as severe or long term irritation, or compression, of a nerve can lead to permanent nerve damage. If you have been told that you have a “pinched nerve” it is very important that you seek professional care from a doctor of chiropractic as soon as possible. Contact us today!
Check out what our patients have to say…
After just one acupuncture treatment my pain was gone!
I had a pinched nerve in my jaw that was very painful and I couldn’t even chew. I suffered with this for a year. My dentist ruled out infection or injury so my medical doctor gave me pain medication. The medicine made me dizzy and disorientated. I was afraid of falling and had to hold the wall just to walk. I am a very active 87 year-old, but I felt trapped so I stopped taking the medication. As a result, I had to just deal with the pain. A friend of mine who lectures at Stanford told me to try acupuncture, that when I went to see Dr. Christine Hoch. After my first treatment I immediately felt better. That night I had some tingling in my jaw and Dr. Hoch told me to place a warm compress on it. Can you believe the pain went away? After only two days and one acupuncture treatment all my pain was gone! I called my friend and thanked her for the great advice. When I went back to my medical doctors office I handed over the pain medication, the nurse was stunned and confused so I told her about my acupuncture treatments. She asked if the needles hurt and I told her only like a mosquito bite! I was very impressed with Dr. Hoch’s office and my results and now I tell EVERYONE! ~A. F.
I had been dealing with my neck pain and tension headaches for eight years prior to being treated by Dr. Hoch. I worked in a very busy clinic at the VA and spent much time on the computer with a phone cradled between my ear and shoulder. My headaches and “pinched nerve” in my neck soon began. Taking multiple doses of ibuprofen a day was normal for me, which eventually led to me needing another medication for my stomach inflammation or GERD. I had to stop doing any exercise that involved lifting my arms above my head because this movement would trigger the neck and shoulder pain. It was common for me to have a stiff neck and woke many mornings unable to turn my head with pain shooting into my shoulder and arm. Shortly after starting to work at Natural Health and Wellness Clinic I woke up with my typical stiff neck and pain radiating into my shoulder. At this point I was also experiencing 2-3 migraines a week and taking Imitrex to relieve the pain. I reluctantly was examined by Dr. Hoch and had my first spinal adjustment. To say I was amazed is an understatement. The adjustment was painless and I experienced immediate relief of my stiff neck and pain. I also was pleasantly surprised when my typical headache did not occur. So now I am four weeks into my treatments and I have not had one tension headache, I am sleeping better, and my neck pain is gone. I have not needed to take my Imitrex or ibuprofen. I have become a passionate believer in Chiropractic care and I regret waiting so long. ~S. M.