Joint Manipulation or “Cracking” – Is It Safe?

Blog, / By Admin

All of you must have a friend who constantly crack their knuckles. I, for one, love to do it too. I know that it can cause people to cringe or feel uncomfortable, but it really feels comfortable to me when I do it. Believe it or not, not only is it relatively safe, it also has give benefits to your joints. It is called joint manipulation and is used by physiotherapists as a technique to help relieve pain or improve range of motion.

What Is Joint Manipulation?

Joint manipulation happens when you bring your joint to its end of range and apply a high velocity thrust to it. The end result is a slight separation between the two bones that make the joint which reduces the pressure in the joint cavity. You can hear this happening because a loud ‘pop’ sound accompanies this process.

What Are The Benefits?

There are many proven clinical benefits to joint manipulation. If you read our article on wry neck, you will know that a manipulation is one of the best treatment to unlock a specific type of wry neck.

Other benefits are:

  • Relief of musculoskeletal pain
  • Faster recovery time from acute back sprains
  • Increase in range of motion
  • Positive physiological effects on the central nervous system

Is it Safe?

Joint manipulation is considered a safe procedure. Some minor side effects include headache, radiating pain, or local discomfort. When performed on the spine, particularly the neck, it has a chance to trigger some conditions. These conditions include stroke, herniated discs, spinal injury, or even fractures.  Therefore, it is important that this procedure is performed by trained professional and only to complement other treatments to achieve better outcome.

Should I Get Joint Manipulation?

You can certainly get a lot of benefits from getting your joint manipulated. However, because of the risks, always check with a doctor or a physiotherapist who can give you a treatment plan. Feel free to contact us if you want to get our opinion on your condition. Below is what this treatment looks like. For more videos of useful exercises, visit our YouTube Channel.