I had a painful pinched nerve in my neck about 15 months ago, and some nerve damage (I still feel numbness/tingling at times). It was truly horrible, but here's how I got through it.
--I think my chiropractor saved my life. It wasn't a magic cure - I went 2-3 times a week for about two months, then once a week, then every two weeks, then once a month. Now I haven't been in about nine months. I could use an adjustment, but it isn't crucial at this point. So seeing a chiro doesn't mean you will be tied to one forever. I've since moved across the country and it has been hard to find a new chiro - they really, really vary, so I'd recommend getting a referral from a friend, or even your doctor (although a lot of docs hate chiros).
--The chiro also used physical therapy techniques such as ultrasound and high volt therapy - very, very helpful.
--I had some heavy painkillers at first - I ended up in th hospital in excruciating pain, and they gave me morphine through an IV and sent me home with Percocet. I was on the Percocet for about a week and then I moved on to something milder (and less habit-forming).
--Ice and heat - there's always debate about whether ice or heat is best, because it's hard to tell if you have swelling or if you're healing. I would say go with what feels good to you. I couldn't stand ice - it tensed me up, so I didn't use it. I used a heating pad a lot. I also had heated seats in my car, which really helped on car trips.
I received terrible, terrible care from the general practitioner at the health center I had to go to as a student. I also received terrible care from their physical therapist and orthopedic specialist. The best care I received was from the emergency room (very surprising, but they were wonderful and took my pain very seriously) and from the chiro. I had to pay for the chiro out of pocket, and it cost over $1000 by the time I started to be well again. So it was disappointing that the doctors covered by my health insurance were so callous and useless. They started out saying nothing was wrong, take Advil, go away. When I convinced them that something really was wrong, they ordered x-rays, looked at the x-rays and immediately recommended surgery.
So my initial visit to the chiro was because I wanted to exhaust all my options before choosing surgery, and I am very, very glad I went.
Whew. Sorry for the novel, but I feel for you. I hope you can find some relief.