While back pain is the number one complaint doctors hear around the country, other types of pain including neck, arm, and leg pain can be closely related. These pains may radiate from compressed nerves along the spinal column. When you’re seeking leg pain treatment it is important to understand the cause of your pain. If a pinched nerve is to blame, you will not find relief until you relieve this pressure.
What Is A Pinched Nerve?
The spinal column is made up of discs and joints that allow you to bend, twist, and straighten at will. The discs and joints are surrounded by other tissues including muscles, ligaments, and nerves.
When injury, sickness, or natural aging causes damage to the spinal discs and joints it can result in inflammation. It can also reduce the natural cushion for the joints that the spinal discs provide.
This swelling and lack of support can put pressure on the surrounding tissues, including the nerves. A compressed, or pinched nerve can cause pain, tingling, and numbness. Depending on the nerve and where it runs, this compression can have far-reaching effects.
How Does A Pinched Nerve Affect the Leg?
When a nerve is pinched in the lower back and affects the legs, it is called radiculopathy. This typically happens in the L4-5 or L5-S1 discs. More commonly, this is known as the sciatic nerve.
The sciatic nerve starts in the lower back and runs through the hip, buttocks, and legs. It is the longest nerve in the human body. When it becomes pinched, it can cause back pain, hip and buttocks pain, and leg pain. This pain can be sharp and debilitating, making it hard to sit, stand, or walk.
A pinched nerve can happen when the back is injured in an accident. It can also occur when there is damage from a condition like arthritis, or natural degeneration such as with degenerative disc disease.
Can A Chiropractor Help?
Chiropractic care for pinched nerves and leg pain is a proven treatment option. Your chiropractor can work within the spine to alleviate the pressure on the pinched nerve, releasing the compression and relieving pain, numbness, and tingling in the leg.
Common chiropractic leg pain treatments in Garden City, MI, include electrotherapy, spinal adjustments, and therapies to reduce swelling. To reduce swelling, your chiropractor may use cold therapy or ultrasound technology. These treatments temporarily decrease blood flow to the area, thus reducing swelling and pain.
Once the swelling has gone down, electrotherapy through a TENS machine can relieve pain by delivering low bursts of electricity. These bursts temporarily confuse the nerve endings in the area, providing pain relief.
Spinal adjustments can reposition the joints and discs in the back. This takes pressure off the pinched nerve, relieving pain and other symptoms. To provide lasting relief, you may need several treatments. Long-term treatments may include making changes to your daily routines to prevent the pinched nerve from recurring. Practicing good posture, maintaining a healthy weight, and staying active may help.
Your chiropractor can work with you to establish an effective routine to prevent another pinched nerve. Our doctors at Michigan Chiropractic Specialists are experienced in working with leg pain caused by pinched nerves.