Will a Pinched Nerve Resolve on Its Own?

Will a Pinched Nerve Resolve on Its Own?

You bend down to pick something up or turn your head to one side and you’re met with searing pain. Or, perhaps you’ve developed symptoms in your legs or arms, such as numbness and tingling. These are all signs that a nerve is pinched somewhere along your spine.

Whatever your symptoms, you wonder how long it will be until the pinched nerve resolves itself.

Well, the answer ranges from a few weeks to never, depending upon the underlying cause of the nerve compression.

To help you determine whether your pinched nerve might be temporary or whether it’s turning into a lifelong problem, the team here at Advanced Spine Care and Pain Management wants to take a closer look at the problem.

Defining a pinched nerve

Your spine stretches from the base of your skull all the way down to your pelvis and acts as a conduit for your central nervous system through your spinal cord. There are 31 pairs of spinal nerves and roots that branch out from your spine, and it’s these nerves that we’re referring to when we talk about a pinched nerve.

If you have a problem along your spine that compresses or irritates one of these nerve roots, you can be left with localized pain, as well as symptoms that travel down the length of the nerve into your arms or legs (a condition called radiculopathy).

How pinched nerves develop

There are many ways a nerve can become compressed or pinched. To give you an idea, let’s start with one of the more common issues — sciatica

With sciatica, which affects about 40% of the population in the United States at some point during their lives, the sciatic nerve in your lower back is compressed. In most cases, this occurs because of a herniated disc, which means a piece of the intervertebral disc has escaped its normal space and it’s irritating the sciatic nerve.

In most cases, sciatica does resolve itself on its own with some rest and anti-inflammatory medications.

While the pinched nerve that comes with sciatica is usually short-lived, the same can’t be said of other nerve compression problems. For example, if you have a degenerative condition, such as degenerative disc disease or spinal stenosis, the problem is not going to get better.

As these conditions advance, nerve compression is a common side effect, and we’ll need to step in to help you find relief. For example, we can turn to interventional therapies, such as epidural steroid injections or nerve blocks, to help remedy the pain and combat the inflammation.

For a more natural approach, we might recommend medical marijuana, which also fights back against pain and inflammation.

We also highly recommend physical therapy, which works extremely well in strengthening the muscles surrounding your spine, taking the pressure off of the structure and off your nerve roots.

If you have a pinched nerve that’s giving you trouble, we suggest that you come see us sooner rather than later. Through early diagnosis and intervention, we can work toward preventing a pinched nerve from becoming a lifelong problem.

To get started, please contact us by clicking on the “request appointment” button or by calling one of our offices in Staten Island or Hartsdale, New York.

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