Have you ever cracked your knuckles and felt instant relief, but wondered if it will cause you Arthritis?
Or has your hip or knee clicked when you’ve bent down and wondered if you’ve injured something?
While it may be a worry to think that you’ve injured yourself when you first experience this feeling, but clicking, cracking and popping sensations are quite common. These sensations are often a result of one of the following reasons.
When you stretch your knuckles and experience a cracking sensation, it’s often a result of air bubbles bursting in the joint fluid, releasing a build-up of pressure. When the body remains in one position for a long time, it can accumulate pressure in the joint fluid resulting in air bubbles appearing.
Movement is one of the best ways to prevent clicking joints from occurring as the movement forces your body to lubricate itself. Air bubbles can also pop when pulling the bones apart, through stretching your fingers or bending them backwards, creating a negative pressure.
Another reason you may be experiencing a popping or clicking sensation is that your tendons may be slipping over the bumps on your bones. When the tendon slips over the ridge, it may create a clicking sensation. While it’s not a need for concern, but if you are experiencing associated pain, it could be a sign of ligament damage or poor joint positioning.
Bones and joints can make these sensations throughout an individual lifetime, however, it can become more frequent with age. As we get older, the cartilage in our joints naturally wears away, causing more joints to pop and click as you move to your day-to-day.
It’s a common misconception that cracking or clicking joints leads to Arthritis, but research has been proven this to be a myth. Studies have shown that knuckle cracking doesn’t thin your cartilage and isn’t likely to lead to Osteoarthritis.
Cracking your joints can be harmless and in fact, may bring you a sense of relief. Although, when it’s accompanied by pain or swelling, it can be a need for concern. Here at Progressive Physio, our team of highly qualified to help identify the cause of the pain and provide self-management techniques to improve your joint health.