Cracking your joints gives you arthritis...right?
A subject mentioned everyday at our clinics is “should i crack my own back?”. This is called self adjusting and where possible should be avoided. In the blog below you can find out why!
We say “where possible” as sometimes we may move our neck or lift our arms and they may crack or pop, and there's nothing we can do to prevent that in everyday life. But purposely doing a movement to create a pop or crack should be avoided.
The pop or crack you get from a joint when moving it in a specific way is often due to gas escaping from within the joint, and is often present during the adjustments we do in the clinic.
When we adjust a joint at the clinic we have specifically chosen that joint as it is subluxated, meaning it is interfering with the communication between the brain and the body, thus causing negative changes within the nervous system. By adjusting subluxated joints we are restoring its ability to move normally thus improving brain body communication, helping to alter the nervous system into a different state, allowing a new health pattern to be formed.
There is a specific process we as clinicians go through to identify the joint that needs adjusting and we are always testing and retesting to ensure that it has had the desired effect on the nervous system. For an adjustment to be effective, it must be delivered at a quick enough speed, to the correct joint in the right direction.
This is why we assess every client, each visit and why we simply don't adjust every joint in any way each time we see a client. ( if you are having both sides of your neck, mid back and lower back ‘cracked’ at every visit, warning alarms should be going off in your head!)
If we were to adjust every joint, every time, aimlessly we would be reinforcing and deepening pbad habits within your nervous system, which is what self adjusting, cracking yourself or others, could be doing.
An adjustment is intended to restore the movement of a restricted joint, if the joint isn't restricted and is then adjusted, you’ll increase its ability to move, and if repeated often enough, making what was a stable normal joint, unstable and now abnormal. This will create far more problems than its solving and can lead to continuation or development of new health concerns.
Self adjusting, like anything else can become a habit, essentially a change in the brain which is difficult to overcome. Like any habit it can take between 2-4 months to change and overcome, so preventing it from becoming one is far easier than overcoming it once it has ( Prevention is always better than cure).
If you feel the need to self adjust or feel you have stiffness in areas of your body let an expert evaluate it and adjust it properly like you would with a painful tooth and the dentist.