The Frightening Reason You Should Stop Cracking Your Neck
Sometimes there is nothing more satisfying than cracking your neck when it's feeling stiff and sore.
If you're tired or stressed, twisting your head around until you hear that popping sound can make us feel instantly better, but is it actually healthy for us?
If you've ever been to a chiropractor or osteopath and had your neck manipulated in this fashion, you'd assume that it must be safe.
However, experts are warning that cracking your neck could cause serious issues for your arteries, and in extreme cases could even lead to you having a stroke.
Chiropractors, scientists and doctors actually disagree among themselves about how dangerous it may be or whether it's simply all hype.
Moving someone's head suddenly can, in a minority of cases, cause a vertebral artery dissection: where there is an injury to one of the major arteries in the neck which can then lead to internal bleeding, and possibly a stroke.
Symptoms of vertebral artery dissection include pain and numbness of the face, unequal hearing loss, vertigo, and even hiccups.
It's believed that vertebral artery dissection may have led to the stroke that caused the death in 2016 of Snapchat model Katy May.
Experts disagree about how risky it may be, after the British Medical Journal highlighted that the rate of vertebral artery bleeds in the US is miniature (1 to 1.7 per 100,000 people), and the number of strokes smaller still (0.75 to 1.12).
So, the next time you have the urge to crack your own neck, you may want to think about contacting a professional instead.