Is that pain in your back, buttocks, or limbs a pinched nerve? A herniated disc? A pulled muscle? Or something else?
According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, “pinched nerve” is not a medically precise term, but doctors and patients often use it to encompass a wide variety of conditions that may cause you pain. The underlying conditions can include:
In all cases, these conditions cause pain through “compression, constriction, or stretching” of nerves.
Symptoms of pinched nerves may include:
In most cases, pinched nerves are temporary. You may need only rest and conservative treatment. But sometimes pinched nerves are a sign of something more serious that could cause lasting damage. So it’s important to pay attention and seek help early if your symptoms are serious or don’t improve.
If your pinched nerve pain is mild and recent, you can try:
But if the pain is more serious or doesn’t respond to home treatment, talk with your primary care doctor or pain management specialist. They may recommend:
If you have a pinched nerve, there’s no need to suffer in silence. There’s a lot you and your doctor can do to ease the pain. Also, ignoring a pinched nerve puts you at greater risk of permanent nerve damage.
So if the pain is mild, try rest and home care right away. If the pain is moderate to severe or doesn’t respond to rest and home care, don’t delay. Contact your primary care doctor or a pain management specialist right away.
Make an appointment with a pain management specialist. We’d like to help.