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What Causes a Pinched Nerve?

  • Dec 22, 2018
  • by Atlanta Pain Management Center
  • Conditions
  • Comments Off

If you have ever had a pinched nerve, then you know it can be very painful. Although a pinched nerve can be slight or severe, the condition may cause long-lasting problems. However, sometimes the issues may just be temporary. But in order to prevent permanent damage, it is imperative that you get an early diagnosis and the necessary treatment.

Alliance Spine and Pain Centers services the Atlanta, Georgia area and can assist you with a diagnosis and any treatment if it is needed. They have 15 locations to help provide convenience and professional facilities to suit the needs of their clients. If your body is sending warning signals such as pain, do not ignore the signals and schedule an appointment for diagnosis as soon as possible.

Definition

A pinched nerve strikes when undue pressure is applied to a nerve by surrounding tissues like muscles, tendons, bones or cartilage. The pressure interferes with the nerve’s function and can cause pain, numbness, tingling or weakness. In addition, a nerve that is pinched can happen in several areas of your body. For instance, a pinched nerve in the wrist may cause pain and numbness in your hand and fingers such as carpal tunnel syndrome. Or, a herniated disk in the lower spine may place pressure on a nerve root that can cause searing pain down the back of your leg.

Causes

Oftentimes, a pinched nerve is caused by repetitive motion. Retaining your body in one position for extended periods can also cause problems. For example, keeping your knees or elbows bent while you sleep can put too much pressure on the nerves. Other causes include:
• Injuries
• Obesity
• Bad posture
• Rheumatoid arthritis
• Certain hobbies or sporting activities

Nerves are more susceptible in areas of the body where they have little soft tissue for protection and they have to go through narrow spaces. Oftentimes nerve compression occurs when the nerve is pinched or pressed between tissues like:
• Bones
• Tendons
• Ligaments

Symptoms

Symptoms of a pinched nerve include:
• Weakness in muscles
• Burning or sharp pain
• Symptoms may worsen at night
• Aching pain that radiates outward
• Decreased or loss of sensation (numbness)
• Hands or feet feel like they are often “asleep”
• Frequent tingling and “pins and needles” sensations

Resolution and Treatment

The majority of pinched nerves resolve themselves within a few days or a week if rest and non-surgical treatments are followed. In fact, rest is the most recommended treatment for a pinched nerve. However, surgery is sometimes needed in order to remove pressure from the nerve and to get rid of intense or consistent pain. But there are other treatments that may be successful such as physical therapy and certain medications.

On the other hand, if you have chronic or continual pain, the symptoms should not be ignored. Intense pain is your body’s way of saying that something is wrong. When your body has warning signals like pain then it is best to seek medical alternatives offered by the physicians at Alliance Spine and Pain Centers. They have 15 locations throughout the metro Atlanta area for your convenience.

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