Nerve flossing or nerve gliding is a treatment that can be used to treat conditions involving nerve related pain including:

  • Sciatica
  • Piriformis syndrome
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Thoracic outlet syndrome
  • Numbness in the hands or feet

The nerves in everyone’s bodies are different from muscles and tendons in that they do not like to be stretched or compressed. Instead their natural motion is a glide as it slides past other structures in the area. Symptoms commonly associated with injuries including a shooting pain, numbness or weakness occur as a result of compression or stretch of nerves that decrease their mobility. These injuries can happen as a result of various causes including direct stretch, compression via tight structures including surrounding muscles and connective tissue or secondary to inflammation around the site of injury.

The process of nerve gliding is a process which uses specific movements aimed to restore the normal mobility of affected nerves. This process is generally a painless one that can be facilitated by your therapist or done as a home exercise program.

If you have these nerve related symptoms, flossing may be a technique appropriate to help you reduce your symptoms and help with your recovery.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Will this technique cause me any pain?
    • Nerve flossing should not cause any pain. It is a treatment that aims to mobilize irritated nerves but before the point of pain or discomfort. Any movement into pain will be causing traction on the nerve and is not desired.
  • What else will be done in addition to nerve flossing?
    • Nerve flossing is often a therapy used in conjunct with other techniques including soft tissue release, exercise and modalities to help you on your path to recovery. Nerve flossing is part of a combination of therapies that will aim to treat your condition.