Our joints may make noises, such as a snap, crackle, or pop, at any age. Snapping and popping sounds are often associated with traumatic injury (i.e. ACL tears have a common pop noise). However, if there is no pain or swelling associated with these noises or snapping sensations, there is no need to be overly concerned. Degenerative changes are normal within or around the joint, especially as we age or with overuse. This can increase the frequency of these sounds coming from the joint.
Our muscles form into tendons to attach to bone. Sometimes these tendons can be under a lot of tension because of the anatomy of the area (around a bony prominence) or the muscles leading into the tendon may be tight. When the muscles lose flexibility due to overuse, underuse, injuries, adhesions, and/or scar tissue, it will pull the tendons taut. Snapping that you can feel or hear in your joints without pain can be tendons rubbing against bone. A similar issue can be related to stretching of ligaments or other structures (i.e. retinaculum) that hold tendons down.
Clicking, crackling or grinding noises, called crepitus, can be heard when osteoarthritis or degenerative joint disease is present. The cartilage between a joint can get worn down over time when movements are aberrant. Also, the fluid inside the joint can become more viscous and increase friction between bone surfaces. The bone surfaces rubbing against each other can produce the crepitus sound.
Non-traumatic popping sounds or cracking (cavitation) of the joints is a normal physiologic response to taking the joint past its elastic barrier. The sound is created when a bubble is formed in a joint capsule. These are the same sounds that you hear with a Chiropractic adjustment. Many people chronically crack their joints by twisting and bending their neck or low backs. However, these joints are not necessarily the joints that need to be moved. When a joint is restricted, the joints above and below have to take up the slack and can become hypermobile. These hypermobile joints are most likely the joints you are able to cavitate. This feels good because movement receptors (i.e. mechanoreceptors) are stimulated and reset. As a result, reflexogenic muscle spasms are temporarily relaxed. The difference between self-manipulation and an adjustment from a professional is the doctor is able to find the true restriction/fixation where motion is limited and provide a force to restore motion to that part of the spine.
The best way to keep joints healthy is to keep them moving every day with exercise, strength training, myofascial release/rolling, stretching, and spinal check-ups and adjustments if necessary. Also, it is important to keep the muscles that move these joints limber and symmetrical. Sometimes asymmetrical and repetitive movements can accelerate degeneration. Carrying a bag on one shoulder or hand, sitting on a wallet in your back pocket, looking down at your phone, slouching, etc. can produce unnecessary wear and tear. At Bedford Hills Family Chiropractic, joints and muscles are our specialties. We can help restricted joints move better with adjustments and improve muscle function using soft tissue techniques.
Where Is My Pain Coming From?
Pain can be uncomfortable, frustrating, and debilitating. Pain can be sudden or gradual. It can stop you from doing your favorite activities, your job or affect your family life. Many people reach for over-the-counter drugs at the onset of pain as a simple, quick-fix solution. However, OTC drugs can mask the pain (which may be needed in some cases) and may not treat the root cause. Masking your symptoms can give you a false sense of well-being which can lead to exacerbation of your condition and potentially become chronic. It also can increase the likelihood of your pain returning in the future. Pain is a warning sign that something is not working properly or tissue is damaged, so it is not always such a bad thing.
Pain can originate from many structures in the body, such as muscles, nerves, joints, bones, tendons, ligaments, and organs. These can all be the source(s) of your discomfort. The trick is to differentiate between all of those possibilities. In order to treat the root cause, a diagnosis must be made to determine the pain generator. Chiropractors are highly trained at figuring out where a patient’s pain is coming from. Evaluating the patients history, physical exam, orthopedic tests, and if necessary X-rays or MRIs paints a picture of what may be causing the pain. Most conditions can be treated conservatively without prescription drugs or surgical intervention.
At Bedford Hills Family Chiropractic, we utilize joint manipulation, Active Release Technique®, Graston®, Kinesiotaping®, and MR4™ Super Pulsed Laser to treat neuromusculoskeletal pain and dysfunction. Once the patient is back to health, postural corrections and Functional Movement Screens / Selective Functional Movement Assessments with corrective exercises are used to prevent the reoccurrence of symptoms. We enjoy helping get you back to the activities you love or just living pain-free!
Yours in Health,
Dr. Stuart Weitzman
#DrStu #ActiveRelease #Graston #SoftTissueMobiolization #JointManipulation #Kinesiotaping #Laser #Chiropractic #Adjustment #Pain #FMS #SFMA #DrRey
What is Chiropractic Care?
Chiropractic care is one of the safest and most effective healthcare treatment options available. Chiropractors can diagnose and treat a multitude of conditions that affect all parts of our body. While neck and back conditions are the most common complaints we see in our office, patients who present with dysfunction in the extremities, like in the shoulders, elbows, knees, or feet are also very common. Another patient population that we frequently see in our office are the athletes that want to improve their performance. Chiropractors are experts in diagnosing neuromusculoskeletal conditions, but moreover, know how to apply the mechanics of the neuromuscular system to improve speed, agility, and quickness.
The chiropractic adjustment is a high-velocity low amplitude thrust to help joints move better. When your joints move better, your whole body moves better. Yet, not all patients are candidates for this type of an adjustment. In these cases, we use low force techniques like joint mobilization, instrument adjustments, table assisted adjustments and flexion distraction which can be just as effective. As a result, everybody can benefit from Chiropractic care according to their unique needs.
For dysfunction in the muscles, tendons, ligaments, or nerves, we utilize soft tissue techniques such as Active Release Technique and Graston Technique. These techniques can alleviate trigger points, adhesions, peripheral nerve entrapments, and various aches and pains. Patients experience increased ROM, increased strength, and decreased pain after treatment.
We also utilize movement analysis, like Functional Movement Screen, Selective Functional Movement Assessment, and Titleist Performance Institute assessments, to examine and analyze how the whole body is moving as a unit. These screenings can show which areas need to be strengthened or stabilized. As a result, we can prescribe exercises to make your everyday movements more efficient. Thus, your performance will be optimal whether it’s at home, the office, or the field.
Our office is a great place to start for those nagging aches and pains or even acute injuries or flare-ups. If necessary, we can refer our patients for x-rays, MRIs or to other healthcare practitioners. In fact, patients often choose us when exhausting all possibilities before surgical intervention. As a matter of fact, some patients avoided surgery altogether. Whether you are in pain or you need to keep the wheels spinning to continue your training, we can help.
Bedford Hills Family Chiropractic is “where the athletes bring their families”. Let Dr. Stuart Weitzman be your go-to doctor for all neuromusculoskeletal needs.