What is an adjustment in Zionsville and why does it make noise?

What is an adjustment in Zionsville and why does it make noise?

What is an adjustment in Zionsville and why does it make noise?

Here are a few of the questions we regularly get from people in Zionsville:

  • What is the noise or popping sound that happens when an adjustment takes place?
  • Is that the same as when I crack my knuckles?
  • Why does it feel so good?
  • How can a chiropractic adjustment in Zionsville help with my problem?

Because we get these questions a lot, we wanted to break down what's actually happening during a Chiropractic adjustment.

Chiropractors locate and correct misalignments, restrictions, or fixations in the spine which are called subluxations.

The spine consists of 24 individual bones (vertebrae) that all have joints connecting each one together to allow proper motion. When a joint is subluxated (or stuck) the joints are not moving properly. This can impact not only that specific joint but the overall function of our spine and the nerves that exit through the joints of the spine.

Some common symptoms that accompany restriction or fixation are decreased range of motion (feeling "locked up"), tension, aches, and discomfort. When a subluxation is present the body can sense that the joints are not functioning properly and will send your brain signals or symptoms telling you that something is not working the way it should.

This works kind of like when you need to change the oil in your car - the light on the dashboard will light up telling you something is wrong and needs to be addressed.

Similarly, when something is wrong with your body your brain will produce a pain message to tell you that something needs to be done to fix it.

By doing a thorough history and examination, a Chiropractor can detect and locate these subluxated joints and deliver an adjustment to help restore proper function. Oftentimes, this fixes the problem and the pain messages will subside.

So what is an adjustment?

An adjustment is a gentle and controlled force that is applied to the subluxated joint either with hands or an instrument in order to help restore the proper motion of the joint. While every patient is different, most experience a reduction or alleviation of their pain after being adjusted. Some patients feel immediate relief after an adjustment and others may notice that they are able to move a little easier. Depending on how long the joint has been subluxated (as well as many other factors) more frequent adjustments may be required to achieve consistently better motion. When the adjustment is delivered we often, but not always, hear a cracking or popping noise.

What makes the popping noise?

The cracking or popping noise that sometimes accompanies an adjustment is called a "cavitation". In each spinal joint, there is a little bit of fluid that lubricates the joints, provides the area with nutrients and takes away waste. When this fluid is produced, gasses (mostly nitrogen, oxygen, and carbon dioxide) are created as byproducts.

When an adjustment is delivered the spinal joint is stretched a slight amount which decreases the pressure in the fluid, frees up the fixation, and sometimes releases a gas bubble from between the joints. Although the noise can be satisfying it does not have any bearing on whether the adjustment was successful or not. The ultimate goal of the chiropractic adjustment is to make sure that the joints are moving fluidly, and that the nervous system is functioning at its optimal potential.

The sound that sometimes comes with the adjustment has nothing to do with the bones, but more to do with the fluid in the joint.

How will an adjustment help your body function better?

When Chiropractors restore proper function to the joints the soft tissues (muscles, ligaments, tendons, intervertebral discs, and nerves) will have less irritation/pressure and discomfort. When the body is functioning better there is less discomfort.

Depending on the reason that you may be seeking Chiropractic care certain exercises or stretches may be incorporated into the individualized care plan. These specific activities will help you maintain your health and decrease the likelihood of misalignments or subluxations in the future. Incorporating certain lifestyle changes are important in order to maintain good health and proper spinal hygiene.

It is perfectly natural to feel nervous or to have questions about your chiropractic care. It can be a little intimidating or different from what you would expect at a medical doctor visit. Our doctors do an excellent job at talking you through each step and taking their time to answer your questions to help you feel comfortable.

Getting adjusted will give you the freedom to enjoy your body as it is supposed to function, and feel great while doing it. So don’t fret over the pop!




Chiropractor Zionsville IN Benjamin Hennes Danielle Hennes About the Author

About the Authors

Drs. Danielle and Ben love providing chiropractic care to all ages and are especially passionate about taking care of entire families. Dr. Danielle focuses her practice on prenatal and pediatric care, while Dr. Ben focuses on athletes and families.

Dr. Danielle is certified in Webster’s technique and anticipates certification through the Academy of Family Practice Council on Chiropractic Pediatrics in 2021.

In their free time, you can find them at a farmers market, walking their dog Poppy, or trying out a new healthy recipe. Drs Ben and Danielle are lifelong learners and love to read and listen to podcasts to help bring the highest quality care to patients.

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Foundations Chiropractic

7625 West Stonegate Drive Suite 100
Zionsville, IN 46077

(317) 207-6235