What Does a Pinched Nerve Feel Like?

December 7, 2022
3 Min Read
What Does a Pinched Nerve Feel Like?

A compressed nerve is a pinched nerve. Different parts of your body may experience pain, numbness, and tingling as a result of surrounding tissues pressing on nerve roots. A herniated disk that has slipped between vertebrae in the spinal cord and is pushing on the spinal nerve that travels down the leg is frequently the source of leg pain.

The majority of pinched nerves begin in the neck, upper middle back, or lower back (cervical radiculopathy, thoracic radiculopathy) (or lumbar radiculopathy). Pinched nerves can also occur in your hand, elbow, and wrist (carpal tunnel syndrome for the wrist).

Multiple Bodily Parts May Experience the Effects of a Pinched Nerve

Your neck may become stiff as a result of a pinched nerve in the cervical spine, and your shoulder and arm may also become painful and numb.

Your back, hips, buttocks, and legs might all experience discomfort if a lumbar nerve in your lower back is pinched.

You may experience chest discomfort if you have thoracic radiculopathy. Make a safe move and call your healthcare practitioner if you are experiencing significant chest discomfort.

Despite the discomfort associated with a pinched nerve, it is typically manageable with rest, over-the-counter medicine, and physical therapy. A pinched nerve typically results in complete recovery.

Pinched Nerve Symptoms and Causes


A nerve may get compressed by bone or tissue as a result of certain disorders. These consist of:

  • Inflammation in the joints brought on by rheumatoid arthritis may put a strain on adjacent nerves.
  • The spine and its discs experience "wear and tear" as we get older. Spinal discs may dry out and flatten over time. As the vertebrae come closer together, the body responds by growing new bones. These bone spurs have the potential to enclose nerves.
  • A pinched nerve can happen as a consequence of an accident or sudden injury from sports. A herniated disc might result from awkward lifting, tugging, or twisting actions.
  • Long durations of keyboard typing or other repetitive motion duties can strain your wrist and hand. It could result in carpal tunnel syndrome.
  • Obesity: Carrying too much weight might enlarge your neural pathways and put a strain on your nerves.
  • Pregnancy: The additional weight may cause nerve compression.
  • Diabetes: Your nerves are harmed by high blood glucose levels.


  • Pain, sharp or mild aching
  • Numbness
  • Muscle sluggishness
  • Tingling-a feeling of pins and needles.
  • Feeling that your hand or foot has dozed off.

Pinched Nerve in Neck and Other Common Places

Depending on where the afflicted nerves are located, you might experience a pinched nerve anywhere in your body. You'll often experience the effects of a pinched nerve in the following areas:

  • Shoulder and neck
  • Pinched Nerve in back and chest (compressed thoracic and lumbar nerves).
  • •Arm and elbow (produced by pressure on the ulnar nerve; for instance, this nerve hurts when you strike the "funny bone" in your elbow)
  • Hand and wrist (often caused by carpal tunnel syndrome).


What can I do to avoid a pinched nerve? Although pinched nerves cannot always be avoided, you can reduce your risk by:

  • Keep a healthy weight and upright stance.
  • Keep your muscles flexible and powerful by performing stretching exercises.
  • Avoid spending too much time sitting or lying still, or crossing your legs. Your leg's nerve may become squeezed as a result.
  • Limiting and resting from repeated motions is a good idea (such as typing). Wrist rests should be used when using a keyboard.

Get Treatment Now

With at-home care, many patients experience complete recovery from a pinched nerve. The prospects for a complete recovery are great when medical or surgical intervention is required.

Call our trained physicians here at BASS Medical if, after a few days, your pinched nerve's pain and other symptoms are still present.