Nerves send signals from the brain to all areas of the body and back. When you touch something and feel its texture, temperature, taste, or the pain that it causes you, your nerves transport this information to your brain. When one of your nerves becomes pinched, this information gets blocked, and you'll instead feel the discomfort of the pinch.
A pinched nerve in the neck is caused by direct pressure on the nerve and can be the result of arthritis, a herniated disc, bone spurs, or spinal stenosis. Symptoms of a pinched nerve in the neck can vary depending upon the placement and function of the particular nerve, but typically include pain, numbness, and an uncomfortable tingling sensation at the site of the pinch. These symptoms come on suddenly whenever the nerve is pinched by movement and may last for hours.
Rest and ice may help to treat the symptoms, but if the condition persists, surgical options may be recommended.