Remember when you were young and you used to crack your knuckles to make others cringe? Maybe you were adept at cracking your neck and back as well. It’s more than likely that at least one person, if not several, told you that cracking your bones was bad for you and could lead to arthritis.
You probably didn’t think much of it then, but now that you’re older, you might be wondering a bit if it is true — especially if you now feel some pain when cracking your neck. So what exactly is going on in those joints and bones?
What Happens When You Crack Your Neck?
There are many bones and muscles in your neck that allow you to move your head with a full a range of motion. When you crack your neck (or other joints), it is actually the release of a fluid/gas combination that surrounds the joints, subsequently causing a vacuum in the area that quickly gets filled back up with gas, producing the “cracking” sound.
A process called cavitation can also be the cause of neck cracking. Cavitation occurs when the movement of the neck causes small bubbles in the synovial fluid to pop.
Are Your Bones Cracking Too Much?
If your bones are cracking and you aren’t even trying to crack them, it might signal a problem. Consistent stress on a particular area can cause the bones to crack when you stretch or move. If the cracking is associated with pain, you might want to consider seeing a chiropractor.
How Chiropractic Care for Neck Pain Can Help
A professional chiropractor has the knowledge to locate the source of the pain and perform treatment that will not only ease your pain but also ensure that your bones and joints are properly aligned, serving to restore as much motion as possible and hopefully prevent the onset of future maladies.