Will chiropractic adjustments cause arthritis?

in Frequently Asked Questions

Contrary to what your mother may have told you, knuckle cracking actually does not cause joint arthritis. However, knuckle crackers tend to experience more joint stiffness later in life. Regardless, spinal adjustments / manipulations are quite different than cracking one’s knuckles. When a spinal adjustment is performed, the joint is slightly gapped momentarily; opening the joint surfaces. Knuckle crackers actually grind the joint surfaces together, potentially irritating the joint. There is no current evidence to suggest that chiropractic manipulative therapy is detrimental to your spinal joints. Although, there is evidence that hypomobile/subluxated joints are those which primarily go through degenerative changes such as osteo-arthritis.

Adjustments target these Subluxated joints and prevent arthritis from forming by increasing their range of motion (ROM). Increased ROM is the mechanism by which manipulation ensures optimal nutrient and biochemical exchange within the joint. This exchange prevents degenerative changes of the involved joint. Chiropractic has become a viable treatment option for those who suffer from a variety of arthritic conditions.

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