Whether you realize it or not, you might already give yourself some slight “adjustments” throughout the day, especially if you spend a lot of time looking down at your phone or sitting at a desk. Achieving that sometimes satisfying popping or cracking noise can provide temporary ache relief or slightly more movement where the cracking occurred.
However, those joints which most easily make the cracking sounds are likely the joints which are already moving the most freely compared to any that may be causing deeper pain or stiffness. This is the unfortunate reason your own adjustments are likely not creating long-term improvements in your back or neck.
Safety of Self Adjustments
Cracking knuckles may be the most familiar type of adjustment that many people do, whether for relief or out of habit. There has not yet been any research that confirms any negative side effects of doing this type of thing.
As far as cracking your neck, obviously the neck is more complex than the fingers and should not be treated lightly. So, it is recommended that if you do decide to crack your neck once in a while, that you do it gently. Doing this type of movement with a lot of force or too often could cause you more pain that what you started with. Therefore, utilizing the services of a chiropractor with training and years of experience is far safer and can begin to bring your whole spine and neck back into proper alignment, to give you more permanent and lasting relief.
Other Issues You Might Be Experiencing
There are other reasons you could be experiencing pain or stiffness, leading you to the temptation to fix it yourself. Some of these may heal on their own, while others could become worse if not properly treated by a professional. Some examples include:
- Dislocation: Believe it or not, a neck bone can become dislocated, whether from an accident, degenerative conditions, or other reason. Some more mild dislocations can fix themselves, or a chiropractor can realign the neck. Attempting to fix this type of injury yourself can be dangerous.
- Muscle Strain: Injuring muscles in the neck or upper back can cause pain and loss of flexibility, even some back spasms.
- Herniated Disk: This can happen over time and is often age-related. Your spinal disks can lose water which causes them to be less flexible and more easily damaged with movement.
Chiropractic and Preventative Measures
The most common issues people are experiencing now include neck pain and stiffness caused by sitting at a computer all day or texting. If this is something you intend to keep doing, it helps to keep good posture and put your monitor at eye-level. The same goes for your phone time – hold the phone up at eye level and keep your shoulders back! To ensure your spine and neck are in, and stay in, the best condition possible, consult with an experienced chiropractor in Glen Burnie, MD on a regular to semi-regular basis.
Thanks to Mid Atlantic Spinal Rehab & Chiropractic for their insight into chiropractic care and doing your own adjustments.