Before you begin any pinched nerve treatment at home, be sure to check in with your doctor. While stretches can help in some cases, they are not indicated every time. Your doctor will be able to guide you to the best at home treatment for your particular case. If you do begin a stretching regime, be sure not to overstretch. Pay careful attention to how your body feels. Build up your flexibility gradually.
1. Spinal Twist. This is especially good for pinched nerves in the upper back, in particular with pain that radiates down the shoulder, arm, or hand. Sitting on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you, bend your right knee. Your knee will be pointing to the ceiling, and your right foot will be on line with your left knee. If you have more flexibility, cross your right foot over your left knee. Now twist your upper body to the right and place your left elbow at your right knee to deepen the stretch.
2. Shoulder shrugs. Stand with your feet about shoulder width apart and your arms at your sides. Gently shrug your shoulders up and down, holding your shoulders up for a couple of seconds before relaxing them back down.
3. Knees to chest. This stretch brings most relief for pinched nerves in the lower back. Lie down and bend your knees, with your feet on the floor. Lift your feet off the floor, bending your knees and bringing your feet on line with your buttocks. Deepen the stretch by pulling gently on your knees. Hold the stretch for 10 seconds, then gently release.
4. Hamstring stretch. Sit comfortably in a chair, then slowly lean down so that you can touch your toes with your fingers. Hold for five to 10 seconds, then slowly come back up to sitting.
5. Side Bends. Stand up straight with your feet shoulder width apart, hands on hips. Gently lean to the right, come back up, then lean to the left. You should feel the stretch in your lower back. Do five to 10 stretches on both sides.
Electromyography (EMG) May Be Necessary for Your Treatment Plan
Most doctors like to start with conservative pinched nerve treatment, which includes stretches, hot and cold compresses, and over the counter painkillers. However, if these treatments do not provide enough relief, your doctor may order an electromyography (EMG). This test will help you and your doctor come up with an individualized treatment plan. Read more about the test on our website and schedule your appointment today.