We can't help but feel the urge to crack our knuckles, backs and necks when we get up in the morning, and it's safe to say we are likely not alone in enjoying this satisfying sensation.
Why do our joints crack?
However, the idea that cracking your knuckles could lead to arthritis is probably as old as time itself but is it actually true? According to TikTok-famous doctor Mutahir Farhan on his account 'MadMedicine' those who relish in the idea of cracking their joints can rest assured; cracking your joints does not cause arthritis!
The social-media health expert who has more than 1.1 million followers explains that the reason our joints crack in the first place is due to a popping sound in your synovial fluid. Essentially, the sudden change in position and alteration of blood pressure that takes place when you crack a joint causes the gases in your synovial fluid to create bubbles that make a clicking sound. He explains:
A lot of people tend to think that cracking your knuckles is going to lead to arthiritis. But that's actually not true. When you crack your knuckles you're actually popping the bubbles that are formed in your joints in your synovial fluid.
Proven to not be harmful years ago
He goes on to explain that synovial fluid is the liquid that is found in the joint space that acts as a lubricant for our joints. He even references an experiment of a famous doctor that completely demolishes the claim that knuckle-cracking is bad for you. He said:
The truth is there is no harm to cracking your knuckles Dr David Onger actually cracked the knuckles on his right hand ONLY, for 60 years and then compared them to his left hand.
He found that there were no changes in his joints. In 2009 he won a Nobel prize prize for his research.