Creaky Joints

Do your joints GRIND, SNAP, CRACKLE and POP?

  • March 26, 2017

I have this sort of conversation with people ALL THE TIME.

“You know I’ve had this grinding in my [insert joint/area here] forever. Just getting older I guess…”

The rest of the conversation usually goes like this…

Me: “Does it ever hurt?”

Them: “No, not really.  Just sounds bad.”

Me: “Does it ever get in the way of what you’re doing?”

Them: “No, but it scares me. It just doesn’t feel normal...”

Many people, just like you, are very concerned with the sounds their joints make.

This sound or feeling is what is known as crepitus when it is a creaky or grinding feeling.  And a cavitation when it is an audible popping sound.

Crepitus refers to the noises our bodies can sometimes make when we move.  It can be made in reference to joints and other times to soft tissues.

Cavitation refers to the popping sounds within joints as a result of gas bubbles.  This is the sound you hear when you crack your knuckle.

In more serious cases crepitus refers to the sounds that the ends of a fractured bone make when they rub on each other, or issues with the lungs, or even serious infections.

What we’re talking about in this blog are the noises you hear or feel that happen when you move your body a certain way.  Not the more sinister kind that will come with a host of other serious problems much more worrisome than a sound.

When it comes to these noises and feelings there are some times that you should be concerned.

    • It came about suddenly and you can pinpoint the specific instance that it started
    • It is associated with pain
    • ​It is associated with a reduction in your normal range of motion or an interference with an activity or daily routine
    • You are experiencing swelling or bruising in the area that it happens

    If that is the case then you should definitely contact a qualified healthcare provider who can properly assess what is going on.

    Think you may have a serious problem and want a FREE consultation to ease your mind?

    Unless you fit the description of that list you probably have nothing to worry about.

    The interesting thing about this concern is that having these snaps, crackles, and pops, is usually COMPLETELY NORMAL!

    If your joints make some noise but don’t hurt, your range of motion is still good, and it doesn’t get in the way of you living the life you love to live...  Then your diagnosis is: HUMAN 

    The reason I say this is because pretty much EVERYONE’s body will make some noises here and there.  And as long as it doesn’t have a negative effect on your life, you really just shouldn’t worry about it.

    You may attribute these noises to your age.  This can be entirely true.  As you get older you may hear noises or feel something more when you move…

    But this does not mean that something bad is happening.  More than likely you’re experiencing a normal part of the ageing process.

    Think about it…

    How did it feel when you noticed your first gray hair?

    Or how about how it felt when you noticed you had a wrinkle?

    It may have been a hit to the ego.  I can’t deny that myself!  But you probably didn’t feel any physical pain when that happened.

    It was a long process that had already been going on for a while.  You just happened to notice it at one specific point in time and from then on you noticed it a lot more.

    Similar to when you want a new car...

    It just so happens you notice that particular car all over the road now.

    That’s similar to how you should think of the noises your body makes most of the time.  You’re probably just noticing it more now.

    All that being said, it isn’t uncommon even for young people to experience these sounds or feelings in their joints!

    This doesn’t mean your joints have any issues.  

    Just that you’re alive and can move!

    Don’t let it overcome you. It’s just a part of being human.


    • Unless you matched something on the list above you probably have absolutely nothing to worry about.
    • Everyone’s body makes some noises here and there. Some more than others. It’s completely normal!
    • If it is not having a negative effect on your life, then you shouldn’t let it bother you.

    The content of this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this blog.