Do Your Joints Make Cracking Sounds a Lot?
A 62-year-old lady visited her clinic and wanted to discuss her knee symptoms. She stated that her knees make cracking sounds since her auto accident injury about six months ago while all other symptoms have improved. She is not sure why it has started, and she worries about her knee joint conditions like arthritis or cartilage problem.
A 37-year-old athletic man visited his clinic and complained about his neck pain. He stated that he cracks his neck on a daily basis since he was around 16 years old because it makes his neck feel better. However, he started to experience neck pain suddenly a week ago and he could not make that cracking sound from his neck. Also, his neck pain got worse and worse whenever he tried to crack his neck.
You have probably seen many people crack their own necks and fingers all the time, but, is it good? A professional would say that it is better not to.
In most of cases, when we hear cracking sounds from our joints it is actually tendon friction sounds against bony areas. It usually does not cause any issues unless it is painful. This cracking sound could also actually be a gas movement sound when we try to make cracking sounds from our fingers.
However, it can be a problem if joint sounds are getting duller or louder with a sensation of pain. Moreover, if we try to make joint cracking sounds purposely and repeatedly it can lead to your joints becoming degenerative, thicker in joint shape, suffer cartilage damage, or suffer inflammation.
Once our joint gets larger from this repeated joint cracking, it will be difficult to revert it to its normal status and can cause pain. In cases of injuries, it may actually slow down recovery times.
So, we do not need to worry about joint cracking sounds when we perform daily activities or during receiving chiropractic care; however, please do not try to crack your joints purposely and repeatedly because it will accelerate your joint instability or promote joint aging/degeneration. It is always better that we perform stretches daily to maintain our joint condition.