How To Fix A Pinched Nerve In The Lower Back


How To Fix A Pinched Nerve In The Lower Back

Back pain is very common, with 1 in 6 Australians experiencing some kind of back problem. There are a range of conditions related to the bones, joints, connective tissue, muscles and nerves of the back.

One of these problems is a pinched nerve in the lower back, in particular the lumbar spine or sciatic nerve pain. A pinched nerve in the lower back can cause further pain in your hips, glutes or leg. If you have a lower back injury and experience pain in the legs as well, there’s a high chance you have pinched a nerve.

Nerve pain can range from mild to very severe depending on the cause of the problem. If you do have a pinched nerve in the lower back, finding the origin of the pain is the first step to recovery.

Based on my experience, the main causes are lumbar spinal disc injuries and piriformis syndrome, a pain disorder stemming from tight glutes.

In this blog, we’ll take a look at these two leading causes and how they can be treated through targeted exercises.

What Is A Lumbar Spine Disc Injury?

When it comes to pinched nerves in the lower back, a lumbar spine disc injury can be quite serious.

Our spine consists of bony vertebrae and soft discs that sit in-between them. These lumbar discs are a common cause of lower back problems. A slipped disc can be extremely painful and in severe cases the disc can bulge out and compress the lumbar nerves. Symptoms of this pressure include strong pain in the legs or frequent pins and needles.

So, how are disc injuries caused? Disc injuries, like a herniated disc, often occur at the gym lifting heavy weights or when bending and twisting. This is why proper form is so important when training with weights at the gym or lifting heavy objects.

Don’t be discouraged from weightlifting though, as exercises such as deadlifting have been shown to help with lower back pain.

A disc bulge is quite a serious injury and it is important to get it looked at by a health professional such as a chiropractor, physio or doctor. Depending on how bad the disc injury is conservative treatment with a chiro or physio will be able to help. For more serious cases, it may need treatment with a specialist or potentially surgery.


What Is Piriformis Syndrome?

Another potential cause for the feeling of a pinched nerve in the lower back is a condition called piriformis syndrome.

The piriformis muscle is a flat, band-like muscle in the buttocks near the top of the hip joint, close to the sciatic nerve. Due to the position of this muscle and the way it sits in the pelvis, when it becomes very tight or inflamed it can put pressure on the nerve and cause sharp pain down the leg.

Piriformis syndrome is often thought to be a pinched nerve because of the leg referral, but it’s actually a really tight muscle.

Causes of piriformis syndrome can include sitting on a wallet or folding your legs/feet under your hips, creating compression in this muscle. It can also be caused by imbalances in your hip alignment.

But there’s good news. If your leg pain/pinched nerve pain is coming from the piriformis muscle, it is easier to fix than a lumbar disc bulge. Using physical therapy, including stretches such as the pigeon stretch or foam rolling the piriformis, will help to release the muscle. Making changes to your posture such as sitting with your hips in alignment will also help.

If you need more help with piriformis syndrome, you can turn to remedial massage, chiropractic and physio for assistance too!

Visit Dynamic Chiropractic

If you are experiencing a pinched nerve in the lower back, don’t be afraid to seek help.

Visiting a medical provider, such as a chiropractor, can help figure out what’s causing the pain and then get you the right treatment. Dynamic Chiropractic is a clinic that provides a range of chiropractic treatments, including spinal adjustments, exercises and stretches that strengthen muscles, release tension and improve wellbeing. We also educate patients on strategies to incorporate healthy habits into their lives.

Our passion is to help patients to get back to feeling their best and achieving their goals.

Check out our health tips blog for more advice or book a consultation with Dr Miki at her Brisbane chiropractic clinic today!

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