How Does “Cracking” My Back Help to Relieve My Back Pain?

Spinal manipulation is the primary treatment utilized by chiropractors. The “cracking” sound is most often associated with spinal manipulation. Joints and muscles are supposed to move through their full range of motion. When they do not this can cause pain and muscle spasm, and eventually lead to the breakdown of the joint. This breakdown of the joint is arthritis. Manipulation restores the normal movement to the joint. After the motion is restored to the joint you can strengthen the muscles around the joint.

A common misnomer is “your back is out of alignment.” The only way for your back to be out of alignment is to fracture (break) your spine. A chiropractor would not be able to help you.

A simple analogy to understand the concept of spinal manipulation is a door hinge and a door. If the door hinge is lubricated and moving properly, then the door open and closes normally. The door hinge can be thought of as a spinal joint and the door as spinal muscles attaching to that joint. Manipulation is like lubricating the door hinge, and exercise is like opening and closing the door. Manipulation and exercise are complimentary.

Some of the benefits of spinal manipulation to your back condition are reduced muscle spasm, decreased pain, and increased range of motion. In my opinion most spinal conditions can be rehabilitated through manipulation and exercise in four to eight weeks.
Spinal manipulation and exercise has been shown in clinical studies to be a very effective treatment for back pain.

~Dr. Dave

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