Fond of cracking knuckles? Quit the habit with these tips

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Sep 30, 2016
Quick Bites

  • A lot of people pop their joints.
  • They get addicted to the popping sound and action.
  • But people around you may not like it.
  • Quit it for yourself and others.

Sure you have heard about the sound of knuckles cracking or have cracked few yourself. But cracking knuckles is more of a habit to some than just a one-time thing. They crack their knuckles several times a day, no matter how annoying it sounds, they just can’t help it.


A lot of people pop their fingers, neck and even back; despite knowing that it sounds gross and annoying. It’s time you quit this habit for good and we will help you learn effective ways to stop cracking knuckles. But first let’s understand what actually happens when you pop your fingers that makes that cracking sound.What’s your guess? Keep guessing as you are likely to be wrong about it.



Your joints have a shell or capsule covering that is filled with synovial fluid to provide continuous lubrication to the joints. The fluid is made up of dissolved gases, mostly nitrogen. When you pull your fingers to make that cracking sound, it stretches the covering which in turn reduces the pressure inside the capsule covering.

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The reduced pressure allows a nitrogen bubble to form and instantly pop. The bursting nitrogen bubble is what makes that loud sound which most of us takes as the sound of joints shifting. So why does it happen only once? Yes, it’s impossible to pop the same joint twice in a go. Well, the gases take more than 20-30 minutes to dissolve back into the fluid.


Now that we know what happens inside let’s shift our focus to why you should avoid popping your joints. Since there is no scientific proof of any detrimental effects of knuckle cracking, including any connection with risk of arthritis, you should stop doing it because it may annoy people around you. So here is how to stop cracking your knuckles.

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Stretch your arms and neck

Perform some simple stretching exercises overtime you feel the urge to pop your fingers or neck. It will help feel some relief from the urge. You also need to be mentally prepared to avoid pulling or bending your fingers.

Occupy yourself with something else

Every time you feel the need to pop your fingers, occupy yourself with something else. You can do anything you like from holding a pen to start writing something to stretching a rubber band with your fingers.

Be more aware

Some people addicted to knuckle cracking often do it without even realising it. To quit this habit, you need to be more aware of your knuckle cracking actions. It will help you stop yourself from popping the joints.

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So use any trick that suits you and stop making that annoying cracking sound. But it is also worth mentioning that, even when you are trying to quit this habit, you should completely avoid bending your fingers to make that popping sound. Bending may harm the cartilage in the longer run. So it is better to pull your fingers as it won’t cause any harm to your joints.


Image Source : Getty

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