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What's that sound?

Chiropractic adjustment - What's that sound?

What is that "cracking" sound? And is it necessary to hear the sound to get a successful adjustment? Why do I feel euphoric after an adjustment? What is the effect of an adjustment?

What is that "cracking" sound?

The audible sound heard during a chiropractic adjustment is created through joint cavitation. This is a high-velocity, low-amplitude thrust manipulation that consists of applying a rapid impulse accompanied by an audible "cracking" sound.

The "cracking" sound is created by movement of the synovial joints. Spinal joints are called “synovial” because they produce synovial fluid. Synovial fluid lubricates the joint and helps keep it in good health.

The byproducts produced in the formation of synovial fluid are oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon dioxide (CO2). During an adjustment, the spinal joints are separated very slightly, causing a drop in pressure in the synovial fluid between joints, the release of a gas bubble, and that signature “crack” sound.

Is it necessary to hear the sound to get a successful adjustment?

The noises you hear during chiropractic treatment depend on the technique used. For example, some techniques cause a cracking sound, and others don’t, but both can be highly effective, depending on your needs.

So, whether you hear an abundance of pops or none at all, you don’t need to worry. In general, chiropractors feel your bones and joints to identify a lack of movement. Then, adjustments are made to generate movement in those areas. Whether or not you hear a “pop” does not correlate with the creation of joint movement.

Why do I feel so euphoric after an adjustment?

A chiropractic adjustment can be a very quick process and often the immediate feeling is very relieving and euphoric. This is because an adjustment causes the body to release natural endorphins, feel good hormones from the brain, and your muscles respond by relaxing.

Chiropractic adjustments have been shown in studies to be extremely safe and are associated with minimal risks.

It may take a few adjustments for your muscles to be trained to hold your joints in proper alignment. So don’t be discouraged or think it’s not working if the relief doesn’t last.

We can help this process through implementing stretches and strengthening exercises. Our office will provide appropriate rehabilitative stretches for your specific condition and make sure that you are properly performing them to prevent further injury.

What is the effect of a spinal adjustment?

Pain in the body is a sign that there is an imbalance in the nervous system. It often occurs in the neuromusculoskeletal system as a result of a misalignment in the spine, which occurs from poor posture, overuse, injury, or stress.

When a misalignment occurs, the joints get compressed, and the nerves, muscles, and tissues in the area are often inflamed. The muscles will compensate and may cause further additional problems for other parts of the body. The spine and nervous system are the pathways through which your brain and organs communicate. When the spine is misaligned, nerves may be compromised; this interferes with the vital communications within your body.

We focus on restoring the body to its full and proper function so that it can heal itself through normal nervous system function.

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1 Comment

Andrea W
Andrea W
Oct 20, 2023

Great article! I would like to see more!

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