This is what I hear all to often in my office. It has become a very popular habit that teenagers and adults do. I haven’t figured out why, it seems as though it is a “cool thing” to do or maybe “just to save money”. Lets look at the serious long-term effects of doing this on a daily basis.
Many people that I talk to crack their neck sometimes 5 to 10 times a day. It just continued to build from 1 to 2 then to 3, etc., because it just got too stiff and it only helped for a couple of hours. That cracking is only “band aiding” the problem as opposed to fully correcting the cause. This bad habit can have some serious long-term effects on the ligaments, cartilage, disc and especially the nervous system. Research shows that this constant cracking can make the joint too loose (Laxity), make the spine very weak, and unstable. It can also create that “old wives tale” which states that it can cause arthritis. That tale is the “truth”, because over time the ligaments become very loose, weaker and unstable. The body then puts calcium in the joints to make them more stable, which is called degenerative arthritis. But Dr. Joe, what is the difference in “cracking” yourself and an Chiropractic adjustment? When Dr. Joe makes an adjustment, he puts the specific vertebra in the right place; there is no guessing or wishing the bone to go back in the right place. It is adjusted in the right place by a trained professional, who has made over 100,000’s of adjustments over a 26 year period. What I tell a lot of my patients is that it is a “habit” just like any other habit (caffeine, sugar, smoking, etc.) just decrease the amount of times you “pop and crack yourself” each day by 1 or 2 or you can just go cold turkey. Let someone like myself adjust your spine; remember that I don’t work on my own car, teeth or heating and air conditioner. I let the professional who is specifically trained to do that job. The most serious complication is to the nervous system. This constant cracking puts tremendous pressure on the nervous system thus decreasing its ability to work and function properly to all glands, organs and tissues.
Remember that it only takes the pressure of a dime on a nerve to take away 60% of its function (seeing, breathing, digestion, etc.) Why risk the health of your family or your own? I have been getting adjusted for 48 of my 52 years on this Earth and I only wish that I could adjust myself. But I have never been able to or will be able to. My Chiropractor is are Dr. Matt Haumesser.