Does Your Neck Make A Cracking Sound When You Go To The Chiropractor?
As a chiropractor every day multiple people will ask me “why does my neck crack when you adjust me?” or “why does my neck crack when I try and stretch it out?”. The cracking sound that is often heard when the chiropractor adjust your neck or when you are trying to stretch your neck is known as a cavitation. This sound is created when the joint surfaces are separated and gas bubbles are formed in the joint fluid. The neck popping sound is not only heard when a chiropractor performs adjustments, but also during other types of joint manipulations such as massage, stretching, and yoga. In this article, we will explore why the neck cracks during chiropractic adjustments and what it means for your health.
What Is A Cavitation?
An audible crack or cavitation occurs when a sudden decrease in intracapsular pressure causes dissolved gasses in the synovial fluid to be released into the joint cavity. This decrease in pressure can be caused by various factors such as stretching or manipulation of the joint. When these gas bubbles form, they create a popping sound that can be heard by both the patient and practitioner.
What Causes A Cavitation Or Cracking Sound to Occur?
A cavitation occurs when there is an imbalance between the pressure inside and outside of the joint capsule. When pressure outside of the joint capsule increases, it causes a decrease in pressure inside of the joint capsule which leads to cavitation. This imbalance can be caused by various factors such as stretching or manipulation of the joint. As it relates to getting a chiropractic adjustment, you can usually feel the chiropractor stretching your neck before applying a quick thrust to your neck. The adjustment has all the ingredients needed to produce a cavitation!
Is It Bad When My Neck Cracks?
A cavitation, or the cracking sound it causes during a chiropractic adjustment, does not cause any harm to your health and is actually beneficial for some people. It has been shown to reduce pain, improve range of motion, and increase blood flow to the area being treated. Additionally, a cavitation can help restore normal function to joints that have become stiff or immobile due to injury or disease.
Now We Know Why the Neck Cracks During Chiropractic Adjustments!
The cracking or popping sound that is often heard during chiropractic adjustment is known as cavitation and occurs when there is an imbalance between the pressure inside and outside of the joint capsule. Cavitation does not cause any harm to your health and can actually be beneficial for some people by reducing pain, improving range of motion, and increasing blood flow to the area being treated.