Why Does My Body Pop At a Chiropractor?

If you’re like most people, the thought of going to a chiropractor makes your body tense up. You may be wondering what to do before a chiropractor adjustment. Will it hurt? And why does my body pop at the chiropractor?

This post explores what happens during a chiropractic adjustment. You will learn why your body makes the popping noise and its importance for maintaining overall health. 

What Is A Chiropractic Adjustment?

A chiropractic adjustment, also called spinal manipulation or joint manipulation, fixes a subluxation or bony misalignment. It is a common treatment for lower back pain. 

A chiropractic adjustment involves the chiropractor manipulating the vertebrae with abnormal movement patterns or function. The objective is to relieve subluxation, enhance the range of motion, relieve nerve irritability, and promote function. 

The chiropractor will place you in a specific position to treat the affected area during a chiropractic adjustment. You’ll often lay on your belly on a specially designed, well-padded chiropractic table

Your chiropractor will push the joint beyond its normal range of motion by applying a controlled, firm motion with the hands. The joints may produce a cracking or popping sound as they move during the adjustment process. 

What Is That Pop During a Chiropractic Treatment Session?

During a Chiropractic adjustment, you may hear a strange popping sound. The sound can be terrifying for patients experiencing first-time chiropractic adjustments, but it can be a gratifying experience for those who know what it means. 

So, why does my body pop at the chiropractor? Spinal joints produce synovial fluid, which helps in lubrication and keeping the joints in good health. The formation of synovial fluid produces nitrogen, oxygen, and carbon dioxide as byproducts. 

During a chiropractic adjustment, the spinal joints separate slightly, leading to a pressure drop in the synovial fluid between joints. The process leads to releasing a gas bubble, producing the pop sound. 

A chiropractic adjustment will not affect your bones. Contrary to a common misconception, this sound doesn’t indicate bones crashing. The pop is usually a much-needed release. 

What to Expect at Your First Chiropractor Visit

If you have never visited a chiropractor before, several questions could be running through your mind:

The first chiropractic appointment usually focuses on the following three main areas:

why does my body pop at chiropractor

Patient History and Symptoms 

In preparation for your first chiropractic visit, your chiropractor will ask you to fill out forms providing background information about your condition and symptoms. 

You may need to explain when and how the pain started, where you feel the pain, and whether the pain is sharp, dull, burning, or throbbing. The chiropractor may also want to know if the pain is a result of an injury and what activities or situations make it worse or better. 

The Chiropractic Examination 

During your first chiropractic appointment, you will undergo a comprehensive examination that includes general tests like pulse, reflexes, and blood pressure. The chiropractic office may also perform specific neurological and orthopedic tests to assess the muscle tone and strength, neurological integrity, and the affected parts’ range of motion. 

Diagnostic Studies 

Depending on your history and chiropractic exam outcome, diagnostic studies may help diagnose your condition more accurately. An X-ray is the most common diagnostic study used in initial chiropractic exams, but it is not always necessary. 

An x-ray during an initial chiropractic assessment usually helps diagnose a recent trauma or spondyloarthritis. It may also help in studying a spinal deformity that may worsen over time, such as scoliosis. 

Once you’re through the initial assessment, your chiropractor will work closely with you to create a personalized treatment plan. The plan will consider several factors, including:

  • Your age
  • Overall health
  • Specific injury or illness
  • The cause of the illness or injury
  • When the illness or injury occurred

The treatment includes spinal adjustments that will take place at the chiropractor’s office. Besides the in-office treatment sessions, the chiropractor may also recommend various exercises to perform at home and tips for living healthily and avoiding further injuries. 

Benefits of a Chiropractic Adjustment 

You can expect numerous benefits after your first chiropractic adjustment and subsequent treatments:

Improved Mood

You’ll experience less body stress and better sleep quality after your first chiropractic adjustment. You will have reduced pain, and the ability to move more functionally, and your mood will likely improve as well. 

Furthermore, studies show a relationship between the spine and psychological disorders like depression. Many patients have experienced significant improvement in their depression symptoms after chiropractic treatment. 

Neck and Back Pain Relief

This benefit is perhaps the most common reason for seeking chiropractic treatment. At least 80% of U.S. adults will experience lower back pain at some point.

A chiropractic adjustment can significantly lower your neck and back pain. It is also more cost-effective than other pain management techniques. 

Improved Athletic Performance

You will enjoy boosted athletic performance with reduced pain and inflammation and improved flexibility. You will also be less susceptible to sports injuries after receiving preventive chiropractic treatments. 

Improved Blood Circulation in the Brain

A well-aligned spine promotes efficient blood flow in the entire body, including the brain. Improved blood flow in the brain is especially beneficial for individuals with neurological conditions like multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. 

Reduced Inflammation

Inflammation is among the major causes of pain, tension, and joint problems. Studies have shown that chiropractic adjustments can reduce inflammation, positively impacting your life. The benefits of reduced inflammation include reduced chronic lower back pain, joint pain relief, and improved muscle tension. 

Headache Relief

Spinal problems and back pain can lead to migraine and tension headaches. A misaligned back can result in pain and muscle tension, which can cause tension headaches and migraine headaches. 

A chiropractor can help relieve your headache. Over 200 studies have examined the effectiveness and benefits of chiropractic treatments for headache relief. 

Highly Experienced Chiropractors in the Sacramento Area

Now that you have the answer to why my body pop at the chiropractor and other questions regarding chiropractic adjustments, you should visit a reputable chiropractor for the best results. If your body doesn’t feel right and you’re in the Sacramento area, please visit Sunrise Chiropractic for a proper assessment. 

Dr. Doug Loehrer of Sunrise Chiropractic has provided high-quality chiropractic care to families, athletes, weekend warriors, and other joint pain patients in Citrus Heights, CA, for over 20 years. 

Contact Dr. Doug Loehrer (916) 727-6400 to learn more about chiropractic treatment and see if it can benefit your condition. 

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