Can a chiropractor treat a pinched nerve?

Having a pinched nerve in the neck is no fun. Pain that just won’t go away, burning sensations that you can’t explain, and muscle weakness that makes it difficult to complete ordinary tasks can all make everyday life a real challenge. If you think you’re suffering from a pinched nerve, your chiropractor could help provide you with immediate relief.

What is a pinched nerve?

A pinched nerve is exactly what it sounds like — when a nerve has excess pressure applied to it from the surrounding tissues. The additional pressure most often comes from tendons, muscles, cartilage, and bones.

Because nerves are responsible for sending signals throughout your body, they can’t do their job when they’re compromised by the surrounding tissues. This is what causes the symptoms associated with pinched nerves, such as pain, numbness, and weakness.

You can have a pinched nerve in many different parts of your body and it’s not always clear where they are. For example, you could have been in an auto accident which caused a herniated disc in your lower spine to put pressure on a nerve. This could cause you to feel pain from your lower back and down the back of your leg.

Pinched nerve symptoms

Here are the most common symptoms patients experience when they have a pinched nerve:

  • Burning, aching, or sharp pain which may radiate outward
  • Weak muscle sensations in the affected area
  • Numbness in the area surrounding the pinched nerve
  • Tingling or pins and needles
  • Frequently feeling that your foot or hand has fallen asleep

When you’re completely still for a long time, such as if you’re watching TV or sleeping, you may notice your symptoms are worse shortly after you start moving again. Over-the-counter pain medication will help relieve your discomfort, but if you’re still experiencing symptoms after several days of rest, it’s wise to make an appointment to see your chiropractor.

Pinched nerve causes and risk factors

There are many different ways you can pinch a nerve. Here are some of the most common causes and risk factors.


Risk factors

  • Being female: women are thought to have smaller carpal tunnels, making them more likely to develop carpal tunnel syndrome, which is caused by a pinched nerve.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis: The inflammation that this kind of arthritis causes can compress the nerves, especially the ones in your joints.
  • Bone spurs: Conditions and trauma which cause bone thickening can also cause bone spurs. These narrow the space where your nerves travel while also stiffening the spine, causing pinched nerves.
  • Thyroid disease: Anyone who has thyroid disease is at a greater risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome.
  • Pregnancy: Weight and water gain associated with pregnancy can cause nerve pathways to swell, resulting in nerve compression.
  • Extended periods of bed rest: Being confined to a bed for long periods of time increases the chance of nerve compression.

If you suffer from a pinched nerve for just a few days, there’s rarely any permanent damage. When your nerve is freed, your body is usually able to repair any minor injuries it sustained and your nerve function should return to normal.

But if you suffer from a pinched nerve for a prolonged time, it could result in permanent nerve damage and chronic pain. That’s why it’s so important to see a professional if your symptoms don’t get better shortly after rest.

How a chiropractor can help

Pinched nerves are incredibly common. In fact, 85 out of every 100,000 adults in the US are affected by them each year. Because of this, it’s almost certain that your chiropractor has dealt with many patients suffering from pinched nerves before and can help you feel better.

Most people experience pinched nerves in their spine when their muscle tissue, cartilage, ligaments, tendons, or bones put unnecessary pressure on the nerves. A chiropractor can provide you with spinal adjustments and massages to realign your spine and free your pinched nerve.

Whether you’re going through pain and discomfort in your neck, back, arms, hands, legs, or feet, if a pinched nerve in neck is the cause of your suffering, a simple spinal adjustment may be able to free the nerve and get you back to feeling like yourself.

A session doesn’t take long, but if the pinched nerve can be located in your appointment, the relief you experience may be permanent.

We’re here for you

If you’ve been suffering from pain, muscle weakness, or numbness, and nothing you’ve tried has helped, a pinched nerve in neck could be the problem. In most cases, your pinched nerve symptoms will disappear following a few days of rest.

But if you’ve been in pain and discomfort for more than a week, it’s worth visiting your chiropractor to get a better idea of what’s going on. Make an appointment with your nearest Veeva chiropractic clinic and one of our teams of qualified chiropractors will diagnose you. Your chiropractor will listen to your symptoms and give you a full-body assessment to get to the root of your pain and discomfort. 

About the author

Matt has been helping providers within the healthcare setting for over a decade. He realizes how best to solve a patient’s problem by understanding the individualism of each patient. Therefore knowing what their true needs are.  To focus on the patient and the “Why” they need their particular service that goes beyond the initial reason for them to seek treatment.

Matt has been with Veeva since 2018. He also has access to over 75 years of combined real-life hands-on experiences from the many doctors within the Veeva Chiropractic landscape.

Read more about Matt here >>