Arthritis And Your Knuckles
I was told at an early age not to crack my knuckles or I’d end up with arthritis like my nana. Perhaps you were also warned about the knuckle cracking?
Let’s explore first what arthritis is and then get to the bones of this – fact or myth?
What Is Arthritis?
Arthritis is the number one cause of disability in the world, with over 915,000 people currently living with arthritis. There are over 100 different kinds of arthritis, and many of these forms can affect our hands.
Some of the most common symptoms include:
- Painful Ulcers
- Pitted Nails
- Thickened Skin
It’s fair to say then that arthritis is legitimate fear… but can knuckle cracking really bring it on?
What Happens When We Crack Our Knuckles?
The crack, pop, and relief once we crack knuckles may feel satisfying and sound great to us, but others may certainly disagree. Let’s see what is really going on:
- There is a cavity between your knuckles filled with a fluid called ‘synovial fluid’. This is what lubricates your joints.
- When you stretch out your knuckles, you are releasing gas from the fluid. This gas forms a bubble, and when it collapses it makes a pop.
- In order to crack the same knuckle again, you would need to wait around 20 minutes for the gas to return to the fluid.
What Do The Experts Say?
There was a study performed by a Californian Physician who conducted an experiment on none other than himself. Donald Unger was a self-described researcher who spent 60 years cracking his knuckles in only one hand. He wanted to see if cracking your knuckles actually gave him arthritis.
After 60 years of this strange yet insightful experiment, he found that there wasn’t an increase in arthritis in the cracked hand over the other. Most medical sources agree with this finding.
Cracking your knuckles shouldn’t be painful, cause swelling or affect your joints in any way. If you do have pain or other symptoms, there may be something else going on, so we would recommend a trip to your doctor.
So to answer the question: Can you get arthritis from cracking your knuckles?
If you or somebody you know is living with arthritis and could use a daily living aid to make their life easier, consider checking out the Uccello Kettle!