Lumbar (Low Back) Pain Pinched Nerve

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Pinched Nerves and Lumbar Pain

Cervical radiculopathy, more commonly referred to as a pinched nerve, is a dysfunction of or damage to a nerve root of the lumbar spine. Damage may occur as a result of pressure from a ruptured disc, degenerative changes in bones, arthritis or other injuries that put pressure on the nerve roots. There are a variety of treatment options that can provide relief to people suffering from lumbar pain as a result of pinched nerves.

Lumbar Pain Symptoms – Pinched Nerve

Pinched nerves in the lumbar spine are caused by compression or irritation of the nerves as they exit the spine. This can be due to a ruptured disc, degenerative changes in the bones, arthritis or other conditions or injuries that put pressure on the nerve roots. The result can be a feeling of mild to severe pain in the low back, depending on the patient.

Is a Pinched Nerve a Symptom of Lumbar Pain?

The lumbar spine is located below the cervical spine in the neck, connecting with the thoracic spine, and traveling down into the sacral spine. It consists of five vertebrae (L1-L5). The L5-S1 joint, known as the lumbosacral joint, is highly rotational and controls the way the body moves the hips. The vertebrae L4 and L5 bear the body’s weight. Unfortunately, this makes them highly prone to injury.

The spinal cord travels through the cervical spine and stops at T12-L1, the last vertebrae of the thoracic spine. From that point, the nerve roots fan out and continue through the buttocks and down the legs. The sciatic nerve is located here and is the longest and largest nerve in the body. If compressed, it can cause a great deal of pain, throbbing or stabbing, that will radiate across the hip and down one leg. This is known as sciatica.

Due to a herniated or bulging disc, a nerve can become compressed or pinched. Pain is felt, but not necessarily localized. The pinched nerve may also create numbness or tingling in other body parts. If the nerve remains compressed for a long time, the pain will increase as it begins sending unreliable signals. Nerve fiber death may occur if the nerve is compressed for so long that it is starved of nutrients and unable to fire electrical impulses. In this case, weakness may occur in the area.

If a patient suspects a pinched nerve as a cause of lumbar spine pain, then a spine health expert should be consulted. Physical therapy or chiropractic care may help to correct posture while building spine and core strength. An alternative way to build core and all over body strength is restorative yoga. The gentle movements using the body’s own weight can improve strength and flexibility. A stronger core means a stronger back and a healthier spine.

At a Glance: Pinched Nerves and Lumbar Pain

  • Pinched nerves in the lumbar spine can lead to pain, weakness, numbness, or loss of reflexes
  • Pain from pinched nerves is not always localized, meaning the condition can occur in one location but the pain can appear along a different part of the nerve path somewhere else in the body
  • Untreated pinched nerves can cause lumbar pain to increase over time
  • Nerve fiber death may occur if the pinched nerve is blocked from proper nutrients

Health Tips For Low Back

  • Use proper lifting techniques at all times to protect your spine
  • Exercise good posture when standing and while seated
  • Exercise to strengthen the muscles in the lumbar spine and the core
  • Avoid smoking as the chemicals in cigarettes can cause to unnecessary disc degeneration

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