Cracking knuckles leads to arthritis.

MythBusters Lifestyle myths
Dr. Susan John View Bio
09 December 2020 6 Minutes

Author Bio

Dr. Susan John

Designation :BAMS Doctor

8 years of clinical experience as a physician in general medicine.8

Cracking knuckles will never cause arthritis! Cracking knuckles can be of many reasons like, nervousness, stress, habit, or sometimes people also even like hearing the sound of knuckle cracking makes. If you crack knuckles often due to any of these reasons, you may keep doing it even without thinking about it! People who do it more than five times a day are called habitual knuckle crackers.


Arthritis is mainly caused by the reduction of cartilage tissue in your joints! Cartilage acts as a shock absorber. The "pop" of a cracked knuckle is due to the bubbles bursting in the synovial fluid that helps in lubricating joints, like blowing up a balloon and then stretching the walls of it outward until it pops. When you pull the bones apart, either by stretching the fingers or bending them backward it will create negative pressure and make the bubbles pop. But pulling your fingers forcefully or moving it in the wrong direction is very painful, it may injure your fingers. Also while cracking knuckles, it won’t cause any pain, swelling, or change of the joint’s shape, those are the signs when something occurs wrong with your cracking! Even if it is free of any long term problems. It's better to seek medical assistance in worse conditions.

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