What is a Joint cracking sound?
The joint cracking or popping sound is the release of the air or gas bubbles that are accumulated in the joint space, which also indicates that there is most likely bone misalignment trapping these air bubbles.
What happens in the joint space?
With the chiropractic adjustment, which the ultimate aim is to allow more movement in the joints that restrictions of the movements leading to degeneration/arthritis or wear and tear of the structures over time is prevented. The joints are stretched to realign the bones in a specific and gentle manner and thus; the release of the built-up pressure in the joints are heard as the audible sound. However, chiropractic adjustments are not focused on making popping sounds all the time but the main focus is to balance and relax all the structures allowing proper flow of blood, nerves, and movement of joints and muscles.
Why shouldn’t you “crack” your own bones?
The first question that you would like to ask yourself would be:
Do you know which bones are you cracking?
If you don’t, what could be possible risks of doing that?
Our Chiropractors spend years learning how to adjust and manipulate the spine, joints, bones, muscles and connective tissues. There, knowing which bones need to be adjusted.
Structures that are close to the bone:
- Blood vessels
Since all these delicate structures are really close by, cracking your own bones can result in disrupting, tearing, torsion or damaging one or more of the structures. There is also a potential risk of nerve impingement leading to complex nerve or disc-related conditions.
One should not be hearing any cracking sounds with normal ranges of motion or any movement unless there are restrictions in the body that could be coming from misalignment of the bones or the bony areas being unstable from underlying conditions. Therefore, cracking your own bones i.e. neck or back especially can result in overstretching of the ligaments or muscles leading to injuries.
If your joint is cracking more than usual or cracking with a slight movement of your body, it is highly suggested that you come by our clinic to have our Chiropractor have a detailed analysis of your spine.
Esposito, S. and Philipson, S. (2005). Spinal Adjustment Technique – The Chiropractic Art. 1st ed. NSW: Craft Printing P/L, pp.2-5.
Article Written by:
Doctor Of Chiropractic at Healing Hands Chiropractic