Children in particular like to crack their fingers, as it produces a cracking sound which sometimes feels music to the ears. Scientists from the University of Alberta joined heads in order to figure out the origins of this noise and they did not come back empty handed!
According to a study, the cracking sound is produced as a result of a bubble forming in the fluid present between joints. This bubble forms as a result of the bones separating, when the fingers are pulled. ccording to Greg Kawchuk, a professor of rehabilitation medicine at the University of Alberta, that second group of scientists came along and said, ” ‘No, no, no — wait! We think what’s happening is, the gas bubble forms but then it subsequently collapses.That’s what makes the big sound.’ ”
Kawchuk’s theory was not believed by all, hence he designed a little test to bring forth evidence. A friend of his who was particularly good at cracking his fingers, was recruited for the test. The volunteer was asked to place his hand inside a special type of MRI scanner. A video of the inside of his knuckles was made, as his fingers were pulled to produce the ‘crack’.
And what they witnessed was exactly what they had proposed as the theory; the bubble formed between the bones of the joint. “Our jaws hit floor,” Kawchuk says. “This is the exact answer. It feels pretty great.”
The new research was lauded and praised by other researchers as well. One such Dr.DeWeber stated that it was only a myth that cracking fingers was harmful. “It’s mostly an urban myth … perpetuated by mothers who are sick of hearing their kids crack their knuckles,” DeWeber says. He thinks cracking knuckles might actually be good for the joints — sort of a massage of the cartilage.