The Reason Why Your Knuckles Creak and Why You Should Never Do It

Are you one of those who constantly crunch your knuckles? Well, you have to know that it is a very harmful habit for your hands.

According to the schools of physiotherapists in Catalonia, the Basque Country, Madrid, Galicia and Navarra, performing this gesture contributes to wearing out the joints, tendons and ligaments completely unnecessarily.

Do you know what the reason is that the fingers creak when you click them? The joints keep the bones together through the tendons and have the function of facilitating their correct sliding.

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To fulfill their purpose, they are surrounded by a membrane that contains synovial fluid. This fluid has a viscous texture to reduce friction between the cartilage and other tissues, lubricating and cushioning the joints during movement.

The synovial fluid is composed mainly of hyaluronic acid and lubricin, among other substances. In addition, the fluid has dissolved gases, such as oxygen, nitrogen and carbon dioxide, which are responsible for producing the sound when we crackle the knuckles.

We explain how it happens: when we make the gesture of clicking the knuckles, the bones of the joint separate and the synovial fluid expands. This causes the pressure in this area to drop, which allows gases dissolved in the fluid to escape, emitting the crunch.

"Crunching the fingers is not good because, in doing so, we mobilize an articulation that already has more movement than it should have and we increase its imbalance," the physiotherapist schools say in a statement.

Some people say that it makes your knuckles creak because your joints feel loaded. However, experts warn that, although in the short term we may notice a certain release, in the long term it causes early wear and tear of both the articulation and the elements that surround it.