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Is it okay to pop your neck? Ask the Internet, your family doctor, or your cousin if it’s okay to move move your head from side-to-side until you get it to crack! And you’re going to get a variety of answers on the same theme:
“It seems safe…”
“If it feels good, it’s probably okay…”
“But just be careful and don’t do it too much.”
Some compare the dangers of popping your neck to the overstated dangers of cracking your knuckles.
“They used to say cracking your knuckles caused arthritis. But that’s just a myth.”
Some might say that cracking your own neck fits in the same category: a habit that some think is kind of gross, but is still harmless.
So, is it really okay to pop your neck?
From the perspective of this Auburn Hills upper cervical chiropractor—someone who spends all day looking at necks that are broken down and causing all kinds of health problems—your neck joints are nothing like your finger joints…and they should be treated with way more respect than the knuckles on your fingers.
Here are just a few reasons why:
And finally, the biggest reason why your neck should be treated with greater respect than your knuckles…in our upper cervical chiropractic practice in Oakland County, Michigan, we have seen our patients’ lose their upper cervical alignment and have their health go into a downward tailspin when they start cracking their own neck, or have another well meaning person do it for them.
In fact, our patients usually move from wanting to crack their own neck all the time, to losing the desire to do so as their neck alignment becomes more stable.
It may feel good to pop your own neck. But usually that immediate feeling of relaxation disappears in a few minutes and it’s replaced by a new desire to pop your neck again. Which means whatever good you think you might be doing isn’t really lasting.
While another doctor might not see anything too harmful in this habit, an upper cervical chiropractor will tell you that it’s a bad habit that’s just not worth it.
Your neck vertebrae are not just a bunch of knuckles. They shouldn’t be popped and cracked like they are.