Hearing your neck make snapping, crackling and popping sounds can mean degeneration of your neck joints or hypermobility. This can be worrisome but this doesn’t automatically mean a serious medical condition. If the cracking and popping sounds worry you so much and if you are feeling pain on your neck, it is best to consult your doctor to find out what’ causing the sound and the pain and therefore get treatment.
There are also simple neck exercises that can help soothe the crackling and popping sounds. But before you do these simple exercises, it is recommended that you see a doctor first.
Simple Neck Exercises
Tilting exercises can help soothe the crackling and popping sounds coming from your neck. Here’s how you should do the tilting exercises. Start with your neck and head in a position that is neutral. So look straight ahead then slowly tilt your head back up until your eyes are directly looking up at the ceiling or the sky if you are outdoors. Hold still for 2 -3 seconds then move your head forward so that your chin is tucked right under your chest and you have your eyes on the ground. Hold the position for 2 – 3 seconds then go back to your neutral position just like when you started. Do this sequence 5 – 10 times. Once you’re back to your neutral position, tilt your head slowly to the left bringing your ear to your shoulder but don’t let them touch. Hold it for 2-3 seconds then do the same to the right side. Repeat for 5-10 times.
- Rotation Exercises
For this exercise, keep your head straight and your eyes forward. Gently and slowly rotate your head to your left until your chin is hovering over your left shoulder. Hold it for a second and then go back to your neutral position. Do the same on your right then repeat the sequence for five times. Once done, drop your head to the right shoulder then roll your head slowly around your neck clockwise and then counter-clockwise.
- Strengthening Exercises
To strengthen your neck muscles, do some resistance exercises. When doing resistance exercises your head should be in a neutral position always. Keep your head straight and your eyes forward. Place your palms on your forehead and press against it. Using the muscles of your neck, press your head against the palms of your hands and remember to use your hands in resisting any movement. Do this for 5 seconds. Once you’re done, press your hands gently against the back of your head then push backwards to resist the force. Now bring your left hand to the left side of your head and start pressing while you push against the resistance using the muscles of your neck. Do the same to the right side of your head.
Don’t push yourself too far when doing these neck exercises to avoid injuries. If you feel too much pain or discomfort when doing these exercises, discontinue and consult your doctor especially if the pain lasts for more than a few days. If every time you move your neck you hear a pop or crackle, get in touch with your doctor.