One thing that connects all types of radiating pain is that the discs or vertebrae are damaged and put pressure on the spinal nerves. Chiropractic adjustments, as well as other modalities that we use in the clinic, are all designed to help relieve your radiating pain.
Chiropractic adjustments help adjust bones to be put back in place and other treatments such as massage, decompression and traction help the discs to heal. Together, with time and patience, our treatment takes pressure off of the nerve and provides excellent, long-term relief from all types of radiating pains without the dependence of strong medication.
I would have to say that Sciatica is most common, and is also a perfect example of radiating pain. Sciatica usually starts when a low back disc is bulging or herniated, puts pressure on the sciatic nerve and causes intense low back pain. As it gets worse, however, the pain travels down the sciatic nerve, which is one of the largest nerves going down the leg.
Once that happens, you can get pain in your buttocks, pain in your thighs, and so forth, all the way down to your feet. You can also feel a burning sensation in your leg, numbness and weakness in your feet and legs and painful ‘pins and needles’ in your toes, and all because of the problems caused by one disc in your lower back.
Radiating pain can come from any area of the spine including the neck (cervical spine) mid-back, (thoracic spine) and low back (lumbar spine). Some of the most common forms of radiating pain include:
Piriformis Syndrome occurs when a small muscle in the buttocks (the piriformis muscle) tightens and puts pressure on the sciatic nerve causing pain similar to sciatica.
Spinal Stenosis is when the spinal canal, the opening where the spinal cord travels through the spine, shrinks, resulting in pressure placed on several nerves at the same time.
Typically formed in the vertebrae, bone spurs can place immense pressure on nerves throughout the spine causing pain along the way.
A Herniated Disc in the neck will often cause pain in the neck, shoulders, arms, elbows, wrists and hands.
Commonly known as a pinched nerve, Radiculopathy often causes pain the entire way along the nerve that is pinched.
Starting in the buttocks or lower back, Sciatica puts pressure on the sciatic nerve which can radiate through the entire leg.