“Crack-a-lackin”- Defining the Crack Sound

Several weeks ago, a patient paid their copay with a check; the memo reading, “crack-a-lackin”.


This got a chuckle out of everybody in the office. No really we just all laughed out loud.

But what is the “crack” that everyone hears when they get adjusted? Some people think that their bones are being broken. Others believe that ligaments are breaking. The truth is that neither of those are happening.

The spine is a large column of bones, which consists of 7 cervical (neck), 12 thoracic (mid back), and 5 lumbar (low back) vertebrae. Connecting them are their joints and discs, which are surrounded by ligaments which act like shrink wrap.  There is a fluid inside of that wrap that acts as a lubricant. When you get adjusted, that shrink wrap (the joint capsule) gets stretched. Nitrogen bubbles form in the fluid as the capsule gets stretched.  After enough pressure, the bubble will pop. After the pop occurs, there is a decreased pressure in the joint, allowing for more motion at the joint. This decreases pain in the area, and allows you to feel better. Ever open a bottle of soda and hear the swish sound?  It’s very similar.

The “crack” is very safe and will help with many of your pains!

If you would like to find out more, call and make an appointment some can have a chat!