Is It Safe to Crack my Own Back or Neck?

I’m guessing it can happen a little like this…

Firstly, you spend a couple of hours working on the laptop or at a desk, sitting in a set position or maybe, you were driving for a long distance and now you find yourself feeling a little stiff and achy. So, what do you do? You try to crack our own back or neck for some instant relief and that satisfying popping sound!

At the Woden Chiropractic, we advise against self-adjusting or cracking your own neck or back.

Often, people ask about cracking their own backs or necks, and if it is safe or even helpful, to do this on a regular basis.

Chiropractors adjust your back or neck to treat areas of the spine that are restricted or stuck. These areas need to be released and move so they regain their normal function.

When you crack our own spine, the joints that actually ‘crack’ or release, are the ones above or below the restricted or stuck joint. These joints typically are already moving too much as a way of compensating for the stuck ones that are above and below them.

The ‘cracking or popping’ sound that you hear with an adjustment is the fluid being moved within the synovial joint from an area of high pressure to an area with a different level of pressure.

By releasing the pressure in the joints above and below the restricted one, you may experience temporary relief from discomfort but, hours later, the tension will start to build up again. If you continue to release the same joints over and over again you run the risk of damaging those joints along with the tendons and ligaments surrounding them. This can cause them to become weak and unstable. You are also doing nothing to improve the restricted joint movement which is what may be causing the discomfort you are feeling in the first place.

The main aim of the adjustments given by your chiropractor is to ensure the optimum function of the entire neuromusculoskeletal (nerves, muscles, and joints) system.

If you or someone you know cracks their own back or neck a lot, they may benefit from having chiropractic care.

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