Is it Safe to Crack Your Neck?

If you have ever had a stiff or tight neck, then you are probably well aware of just how frustrating and uncomfortable it can be. While some people attempt self-massage and others simply put up with it, it’s not uncommon to find people who try and click and crack their neck themselves. Whether by controlling your shoulders and skull with your hands or simply rolling your head around, it’s not difficult to crack your neck but is it safe? Or perhaps, more importantly, does it even provide relief at all?

Is Cracking Your Neck Safe?

Given that there isn’t any conclusive research on the subject and the number of variables involved makes it very difficult to actually carry out any, a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ isn’t going to cut it. The best way to understand whether cracking your own neck is safe for a particular individual is to analyse just how often they like to do it.

If you crack your neck habitually, that is, if you experience a sore neck constantly and attempt to crack it multiple times per day, this could certainly be a problem. Given that you feel the need to constantly crack your neck, this is likely an indication of instability in the joint and constantly cracking it will only serve to make the problem worse.

neck painAnother potential problem might be that you’re an office worker and your monitor is at the wrong height, meaning your posture is compromised and, consequently, your neck feels tight. If this is the case, attempting to solve the issue by cracking your neck isn’t really getting to the root of it.

If, however, you stretch or perform self-massage on your shoulder and neck muscles and your neck cracks unintentionally, this is safe and, in most cases, probably beneficial.


Is Cracking Your Neck Effective?

While cracking your neck can be tempting when it’s feeling sore, that temporary relief might not actually be very helpful.

When chiropractors perform spinal manipulations, the cracking of the joint is a byproduct of the manipulation, not the goal. This is why you might think that cracking your own neck is providing the relief you want when, in reality, you could be missing the mark.

What it boils down to is this: chiropractic spinal manipulation is specific and intentional, but our attempts to crack our own necks are not. So, if you really want effective relief from your sore neck, your best bet is to simply seek help from a professional chiropractor.


If your neck is feeling a little too tight and is causing you discomfort, then Thorne Road Chiropractic Clinic can help you identify the cause of the problem. Our highly skilled chiropractors are equipped with the experience and know-how to make life-changing improvements to your overall health. For more information on our services, friendly advice, or to arrange an appointment, don’t hesitate to give us a call.