What is Lumbar Radiculopathy and What Can You Do?

lumbar radiculopathy, chiropractor to relieve pinched nerves in Encinitas

Does it scare you when you encounter medical jargon? It's okay; that's normal, especially when it involves pain and discomfort from your side. The term lumbar radiculopathy, sometimes referred to as sciatic neuritis, might sound severe and cause you to worry or feel stressed. One thing to note is that these terms are not synonymous with a life-threatening condition; however, if symptoms are left ignored, they can interfere with your daily routine.

Lumbar radiculopathy is usually a condition that stems from a pinched nerve or a herniated disc. It usually brings pain due to compression or irritation of nerve roots in the lower back. There can be other possible causes too. If you are diagnosed with this condition, you will notice common symptoms such as pain, numbness, weakness, or a tingling sensation. Sciatica is also one term people call this and is often related to the pain that starts in the lower back and radiates down to the buttocks, legs, and feet. You can ask for help from a chiropractor to relieve pinched nerves in Encinitas using a non-invasive technique.

If the symptoms begin to set you back and interfere with your life, there are also exercises you can do to help reduce pain and improve your mobility. However, if you choose this route, ensure you are not overexerting yourself, as it may cause more harm than relief.

  

What causes lumbar radiculopathy?

Radiculopathy or pinched or damaged nerves is caused by changes in the tissues around the nerve roots. This includes the bones of the spine, tendons, and intervertebral discs. When a shift in position or size change happens, it tends to reduce the space for your nerve roots to travel in and out of the spine. These narrowing can affect the spinal cord and trigger a whole set of uncomfortable symptoms. Sometimes an injury can affect the alignment of different tissues and cause pain. Gradual spine degeneration can also occur and is quite common when a person ages.

Seeking help from a chiropractor to relieve pinched nerves in Encinitas can help you deal with the pain and discomfort. In addition, understanding what's causing them can help prevent a recurrence. Lumbar radiculopathy can happen due to the following:

  • Herniated or ruptured disc - This occurs when a spinal disc is pushed, which adds pressure on the sciatic nerve.
  • Bone spur (osteophytes) – This is a typical cause of sciatica where the bones meet each other and extend far enough to irritate or pinch the sciatic nerve.
  • Lumbar spinal stenosis – Doctors refer to it as the narrowing of the spinal cord in the lower back that builds pressure felt on the spinal cord and nerves that passes along the spine.
  • Spondylolisthesis - This usually happens in the lower back when one of the spine bones slips out of position. 
  • Infection - Sometimes, infections can affect your spine and the tissues attached to it. 
  • Injury - Accidents or physical trauma can damage your spine, affect the vertebra alignment, or sometimes fracture your bones.
  • Tumors - Abnormal growth or tumors within the spine can irritate and put pressure on the sciatic nerve, leading to painful or debilitating symptoms.
  • Cauda equina syndrome - This is a rare and severe condition affecting the nerves in the lower spine, which requires emergency care.

To learn more about the connection between head and neck injuries and pinched nerves, download our complimentary e-book by clicking the image below.

Is nerve compression dangerous? 

As mentioned earlier, this is not a life-threatening condition. However, if you leave radiculopathy unaddressed, there is a higher risk for permanent damage and persistent symptoms. Severe cases may also lead to paralysis if left ignored for an extended period.

  

When should you call for emergency help?

Pinched nerves are usually not dangerous and can be managed with proper care. However, it does not mean you should downplay your symptoms. If you notice the following symptoms, make sure to call your healthcare provider right away or go to the nearest emergency room:

  • Severe pain, numbness, and weakness that suddenly happens
  • Persistent feelings of paralysis of an arm or leg
  • Incontinence or loss of bladder or bowel control
  • Loss of sensation or numbness in your genital or anal regions

Paying close attention and properly addressing your symptoms can help prevent further damage and possibly save your life when needed.

  

Exercises to cope with the pain

  • Hip Flexor Stretch - This can help increase your rotation and mobility in the hips area, making it more flexible and easier to move.
  • Quadriceps Stretch - This type of stretch helps improve your lumbar flexibility.
  • Knees to Your Chest - You can do this when lying down. Bringing your knees to the chest is a simple move that helps stretch out your lower back and potentially helps with a spondylolisthesis.
  • Upward dog - Those who practice yoga may be familiar with this typical pose. The upward-facing dog pose offers a deep stretch of your chest which helps build your core muscles.
  • Crunches (Curl-ups) - Regular crunches help strengthen your abdominal muscles and potentially reduce sciatica pain.
lumbar radiculopathy, chiropractor to relieve pinched nerves in Encinitas

Seek help from a chiropractor to relieve pinched nerves in Encinitas 

When the pain feels a little too much, even after trying out the exercises we mentioned, you may need the help of a chiropractor to relieve pinched nerves in Encinitas. A misalignment in your upper cervical spine may be the underlying cause of your pain and discomfort; it's been linked to several pinched nerve cases. In addition, trauma or injury endured some years ago may slowly manifest and cause these health concerns. In addition, incidents of repetitive stress endured in the neck can also cause misalignments and pinched nerves.

A chiropractic doctor will first need to determine if a misalignment is connected to your lumbar radiculopathy through physical examinations, x-ray, and, if necessary, with the help of other measuring tools. Once confirmed, your chiropractor will present a personalized bone adjustment procedure to address your condition.

Making small movements and adjustments in your upper cervical bones is needed for a chiropractor to relieve pinched nerves in Encinitas. This safe and gentle technique will eventually help your body heal naturally by relieving the stress and pressure from your nerves and removing any interference in your blood flow. Once your bones are aligned, the nerve pressure eases, and your muscles, tissues, joints, and ligaments will return to normal function. This will eventually make your symptoms gradually disappear.

  

Call K2 Health Center

Ignoring lumbar radiculopathy symptoms can only worsen your condition. Instead, you can stop the pain and discomfort interfering with your life. Get your upper cervical spine evaluated by calling us at 760-280-5460 or book an appointment online. Our chiropractic doctor, Dr. Steven Keener, will guarantee personalized care that best fits your needs. We can help you restore your spine's alignment and balance to help your body heal naturally. Talk to us today!

  

To schedule a consultation with Dr. Keener, call our Encinitas office at 760-456-9470. You can also click the button below.

If you are outside of the local area, you can find an Upper Cervical Doctor near you at www.uppercervicalawareness.com.

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Dr. Steven Keener believes in the power that animates the living world, revering the body as an innately intelligent organism of health and wellness.

Through education and empowerment, Dr. K guides patients to embrace a belief system centered on principles of physiology, trusting in the cause and effect of natural law.

With an emphasis in cranio-cervical neurology, tailored care plans are expertly designed to optimize the body’s potential to thrive.
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