Many of us enjoy that wonderful little popping sound that our bodies make when we “pop” a joint whether it is our backs or our fingers. But just what is happening when you adjust your joints and can’t I just do that to myself?
Your Spine and Subluxation
Your spine is made up of 24 individual segments called vertebra that create all the movement that we do in life. When one of these segments becomes stuck and doesn’t move freely through their full range of motion, chiropractors refer to that as a subluxation or joint dysfunction.
When one doesn’t move freely, the vertebra above and below usually make up the motion by moving more than they should which is why you may not notice the dysfunction until you have pain.
A Professional Adjustment
A chiropractic adjustment encourages normal motion throughout all the joints. Even though you might still be able to touch your toes or turn your head, there can still be individual sections that are stuck. Those stuck sections can cause pain. That is where the chiropractor focuses their adjustment.
The “popping” sound, scary to some and satisfying to others, isn’t necessarily a reflection of how “out” you are. The popping sound is also not bone on bone crunching as some people believe. It is gas in the joint space making the noise.
In school, we were taught that the gas was being released but some newer evidence suggests it may actually be gas bubbles forming. Either way I liken it to the sound that a soda pop can makes when you first open it.
When a person tries to “adjust” themselves, we generally can’t get the right leverage, position, speed and/or force to adjust the one(s) that is stuck and therefore we pop the ones that are already moving or possibly even moving too much. It can feel better temporarily because you get an increase in blood flow and endorphins.
Even chiropractors see other chiropractors. Trained professionals rely on each other because we know that we can’t actually adjust ourselves.
It’s important to have a trained professional assess the motion in the joint and adjust those areas that need it. So please don’t pop your neck or lean over a chair to pop your back. (If it happens while you’re stretching that’s okay.)
Please come in and get a specifically applied adjustment to the joints that are stuck. Speaking of joints, did you know chiropractors can adjust shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, knees, ankles and feet?