Gimme a Good Crack Doc!

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard this one. I get asked on a regular basis for it. For some, there is fear about the sound, or more accurately, what is happening inside the joints to make the sound.

Firstly, it is not the sound of bones rubbing together or ligaments snapping. Try this: grab one of your fingers and gently, but quickly, pull it away from your hand. The result? An audible click. If it was the result of joints rubbing together, it wouldn’t occur when you pulled bones away from each other. Some people believe that repeatedly doing this will cause arthritis or degeneration of your joints. Several research studies have confirmed that there is no arthritis caused by popping your fingers.

Back to the cause of the sound….there is a capsule filled with fluid (synovial fluid) around most of the joints in our body. Think of it like a balloon filled with water. The joint fluid inside the capsule lubricates the joints, carries oxygen and nutrients to the cartilage cells and carries away waste. The fluid has tiny gas bubbles dissolved in it. When you pull your finger, or in some chiropractic adjustments, the gas that is dissolved in the joint fluid creates a larger bubble of gas because of the joint movement. The large bubble then goes back into tiny bubbles and is rapidly dissolved back into the joint fluid. That process causes the clicking sound.

It’s sometimes thought that the purpose of a chiropractic adjustment is to “crack” your joints. The sole purpose of a chiropractic adjustment is to remove nerve interference. When we hear a click, we know the joint has moved a certain amount or direction, but the sound by itself doesn’t tell us that the subluxation has been removed. There are many chiropractic adjustments that can’t even create sound because of the shape or type of the joint being adjusted.

I often get asked if “cracking” your own back is helpful. Firstly, you cannot detect and remove subluxation by twisting your lower back or neck. Subluxated joints are not moving well (or at all), causing loss of normal nerve signals. When you cause a “crack” by twisting your own back or neck, it simply allows the joints that are moving most easily to make a sound – the path of least resistance. Secondly, while “cracking” those joints will cause some nerve stimulation to your brain and a temporary feeling of ease, or pain relief, it still isn’t changing the cause of the problem; it isn’t removing the subluxation. It’s actually the speed of the adjustment the provides the greatest amount of value.

As a chiropractor, I have two jobs. Detect and remove subluxations, sound, or not.

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  • It’s very interesting going in for an appointment after having some pain and the doctor notices where the pain is without saying it. Dr. Neil knows his patients and they are very flexible with appointments.

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    ARNOLD R.
    8/22/2022
  • Sharing from my personal experience- I started a few months ago and I was having an annoying pain in my left shoulder and neck area prior starting, Dr. Neil helped me out a lot with that and I am really feeling relaxed and relieved from that annoying pain. My sleep schedule got improved. I highly recommend this place & Dr. Neil.

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    Bhrigu M.
    8/09/2022
  • Really impressed with the quality of care my children are receiving. They are comfortable coming here & their sleep issues have improved. I also have issues with my wrist and hands & they kindly looked at my issue and gave me a quick adjustment free of charge.

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    n/a w.
    5/15/2022
  • The team at Ancaster Family Chiropractic are amazing. I've been seeing Dr. Neil for quite a few years now and am so glad I have. Dr. Neil's treatment plan has not only given me greater mobility I very rarely even get sick. I would highly recommend Dr. Neil if you're looking for a way to improve your health. Give Deb a call and make an appointment, you won't regret it. If you want to feel healthier this is the place to go.

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    Kris C.
    4/29/2022
  • After a few month treatment, my neck and shoulder feel much better and I can work in front of the computer much longer...Dr Neil is very knowledgeable and the staffs are very very friendly!

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    Amanda P.
    4/24/2022
  • All my family (my wife, 3yr daughter and myself) have regularly treatments from Dr. Neil and his awesome team. Definitely a big improvement and highly recommend.

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    HK M.
    4/24/2022
  • Started going too the Ancaster family chiropractic about a month ago with neck and mid to lower back pain. Now I'm having less pain and stiffness through out the week.They also put together a personal plan for the problems I was going through and walk me through how they were going to solve them

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    colin p.
    4/24/2022
  • I've been in Dr Neil's care for a little over a year now. I was sent to him by a referral, a family that had been going to him for years, with nothing but good things to say and much success!I had a terrible fall, which caused me unbearable coccyx pain. Needless to say, once I had a few xrays, we found many problems with my spine. Dr Neil has tackled each of my issues with care, and in priority. I can't believe the difference over the year. I am continuing my journey for better spine/back health, with full confidence and trust in Dr. Neil!

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    Krista H.
    4/17/2022
  • I don't think I ever actually understood what a chiropractor was supposed to do before coming here. I've only just starting coming here, but I'm already noticing a difference! Their initial assessment was so incredibly informative, and every visit since then has only helped me understand my body better.

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    Felicia C.
    4/17/2022
  • Dr. Neil has helped our family from his care. From having daily migraines to no headaches at all!

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    Shane D.
    4/10/2022
  • Honestly, this was the first chiropractor I've been to that insisted on xrays before treatment. And wow, I was glad I had them done, the proof was in the pudding, I myself could see my misalignment. Dr Neil is so absolutely friendly and patient, I walked in there in so much pain and I feel so much better. I referred my partner to the clinic as well, as they've gained my trust

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    Haley M.
    4/10/2022
  • This is my first experience with chiropractic medicine and it has been very, very positive. The now bimonthly adjustments keep me very mobile and comfortable.

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    Gina R.
    4/10/2022
  • I've been seeing Dr Neil for the past 3 months and my physical rehabilitation has been amazing. My range of motion is 10 times better, I walk more upright now, sporadic pains in various areas of my body have substantially decreased. The clinic staff are super friendly, knowledgeable and professional. I'm very grateful to have found this place 🙂. Keep rocking those super cool dress shirts Neil! Butterfly one is my fav 👌

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    Tarus F.
    4/10/2022
  • I started the chiropractic here with severe pain in my neck and low back area at this center. Now after 4 months of doing weekly adjustments with Dr. Neil, I can observe the great improvement in my body posture and my neck movement. and best part is that I started my routine workout that last time I urged to stop due to my neck pain. I'm so thankful to get to know Dr. Neil and his great and helpful team.i will continue having my regular adjustments so that I will feel as healthy and fit as I can be for the rest of my life!thank you Ancaster Family!

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    Nillie A.
    4/10/2022
  • I have been committed to my treatment plans for just over a year now and I am pleased to say that I have made tremendous progress. Dr. Neil, Deb and Sue are passionate about what they do and it is apparent in their patient care. I am eternally grateful to my friend that referred me. If you are looking for a chiropractor look no further.

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    Malisa C.
    4/10/2022
  • Dr. Neil is caring and truly wants to help you get better. I have been completing adjustments for a few months now and have noticed considerable improvement to my posture. My back pain is starting to disappear and I know that the continued treatment will help me get back to normal. Thank you to you and your team :)

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    Vanessa M.
    4/10/2022
  • I have been going to see Dr. Neil and his wonderful staff for a couple of months now and I'm starting to see an improvement in my back and neck pain. If you are in need of chiropractic services I would highly recommend Ancaster Family Chiropractic.

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    Mike M.
    4/10/2022
  • I've been attending chiropractic sessions by Dr. Niel and I should say they've been great. My posture hase been improved along with my balance. Dr.Niel has a very professional attitude and spends time with patients to find the root causeof the problemsvand resolving them in order to make a longstanding change. The other team members are also very friendly and helpful and it's been a pleasure dealing with them.

    Matt E. Avatar
    Matt E.
    4/10/2022
  • I have been committed to my treatment plans for just over a year now and I am pleased to say that I have made tremendous progress. Dr. Neil, Deb and Sue are passionate about what they do and it is apparent in their patient care. I am eternally grateful to my friend that referred me. If you are looking for a chiropractor look no further.

    Malisa Chateram Avatar
    Malisa Chateram
    4/07/2022
  • I've been seeing Dr Neil for the past 3 months and my physical rehabilitation has been amazing. My range of motion is 10 times better, I walk more upright now, sporadic pains in various areas of my body have substantially decreased. The clinic staff are super friendly, knowledgeable and professional. I'm very grateful to have found this place 🙂. Keep rocking those super cool dress shirts Neil! Butterfly one is my fav 👌

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    Tarus Fatah
    4/07/2022

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