Northwest Wellness's Blog

Useful information for a healthy lifestyle.

Looking for a specific blog topic?  Search here:

Pinched Nerves


The nervous system is interconnected throughout our bodies, allowing organs to function properly and a person to respond to stimuli.  The nervous system runs from our head to our toes, and if a vertebra is out of alignment, the pain can be felt in another area of the body.  When someone suffers from a pinched nerve, it means that a nerve is compressed and in an abnormal position. Pinched nerves can be caused by improper posture, lifting heavy items, trauma, or reaching for something in an awkward way.

A subluxation is a misalignment of a spinal bone that puts pressure on a spinal nerve that comes out and controls and coordinates different parts of the body. Subluxations can cause pain or different types of muscle spasms.

The spinal disc is the cushion between the bones that functions like a shock absorber. With degenerative disc disease, a disc starts getting thinner and loses its height. The hole that the nerve exits through is called the intervertebral foramina and the degeneration causes it to get smaller. It allows less room for the nerve to exit and it puts pressure on the nerve.

When a disc herniates it pushes up against the nerve and irritates the nerve which comes out and shoots down into the arms, legs, and different body parts.

The chiropractor will examine the patient’s spine and note any misaligned vertebrae, also known as subluxations, when these vertebrae are out of place, they can put intense pressure on the nerves in the spine, pinching a nerve.

Once noting any subluxations, the chiropractor will prescribe a treatment plan, involving spinal adjustments. The adjustment can be done using the hands or an instrument, and are gentle, non-invasive ways to put misaligned vertebrae back where they belong. Once the spine is aligned, nerve blocks are removed allowing blood to bring oxygen and other nutrients throughout the body. The improved circulatory function can help relieve pain and boost the immune system. Regular visits may also help a pinched nerve heal faster and prevent future damage. When left untreated, pinched nerves can cause pain, reduced mobility, and inflammation.