Chronic back pain, have to pop/crack dozens of times a day



  • Hey everyone, 
    I just wanted to give you my story and how I'm finally starting to see progress on my lower back situation.  But first some background information: I'll try to be as detailed as possible in explaining my condition. I'm 33 years old, 5 Feet 10 and about 175 lbs. 
    I've always had back issues, but most of the time it was minor and would go away over a short period of time.  About 3 years ago I was lifting boxes of laminate flooring, I was twisting and turning my body to move these boxes.  One time I twisted and I had immediate shortness of breath like something got triggered in my back, either a nerve or something else.  That same evening I went to the chiro when I should've let my back rest for a day or so. 
    Ever since then, every single morning I wake up with back stiffness and this carries out throughout the day.  I would say my back pain is about 7-8/10 in the morning, after a shower and rolling on the foam roller it goes to about a 4-5.  The pain never goes away and at its best, it's a 3/10. I have to crack my back on my chair or on the ground 10-15 times a day.  I've had physio, chiro, massage, acupuncture, cup therapy, taken magnesium, Tumeric, and fish oil pills, and everything is temporary relief until a few hours later or the following morning.  I purchased a firm mattress, different pillows, orthotics, back braces, exercised and strengthened my back, becoming more active but nothing truly works.  I've also had ultrasounds, X-rays, MRI's and they didn't find anything.  The only thing they could find was on a blood test I had HLA B27, but after the more advanced blood test, they said I had nothing.  
    I'm just at a loss of words that no one can really find what's going on and it's affecting my quality of life.  I came across this forum and I was relieved that there were people experiencing the same thing I was, but also taken aback that no one found a solution or methods to fix this.  After doing some more research online, I came across Prolotherapy.  It's something I've never heard about but the more research I did, and the more videos/testimonials I've read, I figured this could be it!  Of course, it's not covered by Health Insurance, even in Canada, so I had been contemplating going to the states to get this done.  It's expensive, about $400-$600 dollars per session and you would need 4-6 sessions.  Like a lot of people, I don't have $3000 lying around, so I decided to look for possible alternate routes. 
    For those who don't know what Prolotherapy, a simple google search "Prolotherapy is an injection that contains a potential irritant, such as a dextrose solution. The irritant is thought to trigger the body's healing response. Once activated, the body will start to strengthen and repair damaged ligaments in the joint." 
    After talking this over with a friend, she suggested an alternative version called Neural Prolotherapy.  I suggest everyone read up on it, again its something I've never heard of but something that a lot of athletes have used and it doesn't cost nearly as much.  its stated to have a 90% success rate and each session, the pain decreases by about 50%.  I had my first session yesterday and I immediately felt some relief.  The true test would the following morning and it's safe to say my back has improved!! It's not totally there yet but I've honestly felt the best I have in years after 1 session.  Its essentially a needle with sugar water injected into the inflamed areas.  I got it done all over my back, my shoulder and knee as I have been having some pain and discomfort there as well.  It's not a walk in the park.  The needle gets into your skin about 1 cm deep which isn't much, however when it gets into contact with an inflamed area, it does hurt a little and there is some soreness.  I figured I'm here for the appointment anyway so, no pain no gain! I'm going for another appointment next week and I will hopefully post again with an update on my back, but so far so good.  
    I really hope this works out for me, and I urge you all to do some research on it!  Another thing the doctor has mentioned is that I do eat a lot of foods that cause inflammation in my body.  She's confident the treatment can fix me, but to prevent it coming back, I need to start eating healthier and taking better care of my body.  
    Sorry for the long story, but this forum has helped me so much over the past few weeks, and I wanted to share and hopefully help some of you out as well. 
  • Hi! I joined so I could comment and share my experience because so many of you have the same issues as I do and it is such a relief to not feel so alone! I am 24 and I had my 2 children 14 months apart. After my second child I started to experience the pain in my thoracic spine. I went to a Chiro who said it was a slipping rib. After months of only temporary relief after he cracked my back against a wall, I started psychical therapy. It helped temporarily with Muscle spasms with the stretching and massage Included in therapy but a week of no therapy and back to where I started. I have been told there is a possibility I have fibromyalgia but no diagnosis. I wake up stiff as a board, I have to either throw in a couple rice bags or climb straight into a hot shower so I can start to crack/loosen up. I have become quite the professional back cracker the past 3 years, I can usually manipulate myself to get a crack and gain some mobility, until I can’t. Sometimes I experience hard jabs in my ribs when I use the foam roller on my upper back. My neck is pretty much always so tight it feels like I’ve been hanging over a ledge , looking up and holding my head like that for hours. Heat is the only thing that really helps. I constantly have a painful/irritating feeling of needing to crack up under my right shoulder blade and my traps are constantly in a wad. I get light headed all the time and pass out sometimes. I usually experience vertigo when I close my eyes. Sometimes it’s worse than others. I’m in PT again right now working on strengthening my core (I do notice some sway back ) but I’m not incredibly hopeful. So sick of feeling like an old lady, I did gymnastics for a few years and I feel like I don’t even know this body. I actually haven’t been told about hyper mobility but I am certainly looking into it tonight! All the best to you reading, you’re not alone and sometimes in pain like this it helps to know that 

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  • I stayed up all night reading everyones experience and am so glad I found this forum! I have never really been able to quite articulate what I have been going through except for the fact that I have chronic pain. I am 28 years old and have been dealing with upper back, neck, and shoulder pain on my right side for going on 5 years. Ive worked as a hairstylist for the last 10 years but was only assisting for the first 4 or 5 so not as much use of my shoulder until I started taking my own clients (it does require a lot of overhead repetitive movements that could be contributing) I also work at a gym (4 years now) where I scan keys and again a lot of reaching over the desk.  Buuuuuuut if my memory serves me right I believe this all started after a minor car accident. I was a passenger in a car that was stopped at a red light when someone slammed into the back of us, there was no head rest and I had pretty bad whiplash. I went to my PCP for about 6 months and really wish I would have gone to someone else ( its almost as if she didnt believe that I could be in pain that long after) She had prescribed some anti inflammatorys and eventually some PT. PT didnt do much and stopped going because it was out of pocket. About a year after the injury I started to experience very tight trap muscles around the neck area, it was pretty unbearable but would come and go for weeks at a time. Any time I would over exert the muscle the tightness would come back, everytime I thought about going to someone about it the pain would go away and itd be a couple weeks before itd come back. I was probably a couple years in before I really couldnt take it anymore and by this time the pain had slowly spread down to what felt like my entire thoracic area. It felt like one giant muscle spasm all the time, I couldnt get comfortable and it was now affecting my sleep. I would wake up stiff, sore and tender but would get minor relief as I started my day only for it to get worse by the evening.I had also noticed when sitting a numbness down my right leg and eventually same numbness in my right arm down to my pinky. I finally went to a different PCP and she prescribed me a muscle relaxer and some PT( I was told it was my shoulder but this was only based off of a questionare they had and them knowing my profession. The muscle relaxers wouldnt touch the pain so I stopped taking those and continued with the PT. We would do the bands and stretches and finish with TENS. I would go once a week and and after weeks of PT I began to notice by the evening I would be in unbelievable pain all in my upper to mid back, it felt like a major spasm that wouldnt release and really restricted my breathing. It was so bad I had considered going to the emergency room a couple times, something wasnt right I was in too much pain and could not catch my breath and this happened every day that I had gone to PT so eventually stopped going. The pain and tightness was everyday, it was literally all I could think about and super depressing. Nothing seemed to help and it was only getting worse. Car rides were a nightmare or even just sitting for more that 5 minutes would cause immense build up of what felt like pressure in my back, it would restrict breathing, cause nausea, headaches. The pain is almost always on my right side and seems to move around. There is one spot in between my right shoulder blade that never goes away and I can feel it when I take deep breathes if I can actually get one in. The numbness in the leg/butt and arm/pinky can come and go, the entire muscle to the right of my spine occasionally locks up  but that hasnt happened since I started dry needling which I will get to  I saw an orthopedist and again was told it was my shoulder due to it being hypermobile he didnt do much other than move my arm around so was never really satisfied with his exam. Only after I mentioned that I always felt like I was leaning he examed my back and was also told I had a very slight case of scoliosis. I was again told to do PT and if a year later it wasnt better then to consider surgery. Ignored that and started seeing a PT guy my sister recommended that happened to do dry needling and it was amazing. This PT person was very knowledgeable and did a thorough exam. I finally felt like someone was listening to me, my pelvis was out of alignment so he fixed that, and had done some manual manipulation on my back as well as the needling. I felt great and hadnt noticed any pain until I slept on a rock hard couch and all the tightness and stiffness came back immediately. I was miserable until I could get the dry needling again. It got rid of so many of the knots in my back and shoulder that were causing the extreme tightness and stiffness. Its only temporary relief  and I have to go back every 4 to 5 weeks, it feels like the same knots form over and over again and it doesnt take long. He does some chiropractic type stuff and a lot of stretching. I am very aware of my posture and work on that, I have extremely tight hip flexors and hamstrings and stretch everyday multiple times a day as well as the cracking. I dont know exactly when that started but I do remember it only being a tiny crack here and a tiny crack there. Now its all day everyday and its my entire spine. I could literally be sitting and when I stand my entire spine cracks on its own. Sometimes I have to twist and contort myself to get a good crack and other times all I have to do is breathe. Its temporary relief but necessary. If I dont crack I feel a ton of pressure on my spine that becomes unbearable. Like other have said it feels like everything is stuck together and I have to pull it to get everything to separate. There is also a spot again in between my right shoulder and spine that when I would pull my head forward and to the left I would feel a tiny click or snap, it has since grown to be a bigger click or snapping and way more often. It relieves a ton of pressure whenever Im able to get it to click but still have no idea what that could be.  Eventually he told me it was my shoulder too, its dropped and pulls forward causing misalignment of my spine. I have stretches with bands I do every other day to help strengthen the muscles surrounding my shoulder. Everything is connected and so when one group of muscles goes then others try and compensate creating a very confusing and long journey to find the root cause. Im still convinced there must be a connection to my whiplash injury and even more so now after meeting a client who had a very similar if not identical experience. Same kind of car accident same injury and same sources of pain (the shoulder) She is now getting back surgery after 40 years of pain. She had the car accident at 29, a spinal fusion at 38 and now back surgery at 69. She referred me to a spine specialist and so now I will go see him. Im really hoping I can get some answers but to be honest I wouldnt be surprised if the found nothing. TOC pops up SRS, fibro, myofascial pain syndrome, arthritis and some much more when Im trying to do my own research, none of them seem to fit 100% and its an endless search. Im glad to have found others with similar pain, I will also note too that autoimmune diseases and arthritis are in my family and have no idea if that could be related. I know this was extra lengthy but I really wanted to give a good idea of what Im dealing with. Since dry needling my pain has improved and is more central to the spot inbetween the shoulder and spine as well as the upper trap area, I still get slight numbness down my leg and arm when sitting but not as bad. I stretch everyday and do a slight workout 3 times a week. Im still cracking a lot a lot and use a heating pad or a hot bath. Im always readjusting myself when standing sitting or laying down, if im in one position for too long I begin to get more pain. I mostly twist to the right and do the neck thing to get that spot in-between the blades and tilt my head way back to get a good crack there. My other joints crack too and again I feel a great amount of pressure in these joints until I crack them. I crack my ankles, knees, wrists and elbows and when I do I feel relief in my whole body .I always feel better and can breathe better too. I hope this helps.

  • Hello everyone. 32 year old male with similar symptoms. I co Stanton have pain and popping in my upper/mid back on the right side. Especially under the shoulder blade to spine. Since I was probably 16 had pain numbness under my right shoulder blade but always just thought it would go away. It has gotten worse with age and now it is not only in that spot but also on the left side, in my neck, and hips. 

    I have told my PCP about it probably 4 or 5 times and she says it’s just stress/anxiety and dismissed me. I went to Chiro 2 times but I didn’t see any benefits and have been doing physical therapy for a couple months with very minimal improvement. Like most say the dry needling works the best but they haven’t done it on the right side yet just left but helped greatly. They are supposed to on Monday for the right side. 

    I also have a dr appointment Monday to try to get some answers. I can’t find any real relief. Some days are def worse than others. I wonder how much of it is stress/anxiety and constantly worrying about it. I feel if I didn’t worry about it all the time they pain would be way less. Much easier said than done

  • Hi everyone. I made an account just to comment since I have so many similar symptoms. I'm a 26 year old female and have had chronic back pain since I was 14. @crackit I have almost the exact same symptoms and am also hypermobile, which I also believe is the underlying cause.

    When I was a teen, I used to have really bad spasms and frequently would lie on the floor to reposition my back and crack constantly. I was told by doctors to just exercise more, not really taken seriously. Was given pain meds to deal with my back and ended up causing a gastrointestinal problem. 

    The spasms stopped as I got older but was referred to pain clinic when I was 17. They told me I was really deconditioned and my muscles were weak. To this day it hurts when someone touches the muscles in my back, thighs, and butt. 

    I have seen chiros, physiotherapists, been to Pilates, yoga, etc. A neurologist who thought it was in my head. Got MRIs, cat scans, nothing. 

    In the last 5 years, the pain has spread to my knees where I was having significant issues walking. Worked on that in physio and now it has spread to my shoulders and neck. On top of constantly cracking my back, I am now hunching forward or "turtling" to crack the very back of my neck to relieve the pain. I am also getting tingling in my hands semi regularly and burning sensation in my feet. 

    It feels like it's spreading but luckily I've found the one physio who takes me seriously and realizes that it's not normal for a young girl to get shin splints after walking in the mall for 3 hours. She is referring me to a rheumatologist so I'm cautiously optimistic to find out more. 

    I hope more people who are hypermobile can contribute here so we can share more learnings and how to deal with this. I thought at one point that I might have Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, since I have the joint pain, gastrointestinal issues, digestive issues, and dizziness that all align but my EKG and hereditary history is somewhat inconclusive. Haven't been able to get in to an EDS clinic yet since the wait is very long. 

    @crackit I'm very interested in your story and what your progress is - please keep updating. 

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  • Hi all, quick update:

    I've recently seen a Sports Physician and he ordered an mri. Mri showed degenerative changes in my T10 costovertebral joint, on the side it locks up. It also showed some none spurs in my neck. 

    I'm looking at getting a cortisone injection into the joint, after doing some prehab with a chiropractor.  My chiro recommended this as he's seen good results with another patient with similar issues: do some adjustments and strengthening etc and get it as settled as possible then do the injection into the joint. I'll give it a try, but if it doesn't work, I'm going to use either BPC-157 or TB-500 or both. Anecdotal reports on these two peptides are great. I can get these two peptides legally with a prescription in Australia so hopefully either the cortisone or peptides settle it down.

    The left side from where my back has been locking up has been constantly spasming and cramping for a few weeks now. I used to have a dry needling guy who I responded really well to, especially when I had muscle spasms, but he's no longer seeing patients unfortunately. I had to fight tooth and nail with the sports physician to get Valium prescribed for the spasms. He treated me as if I'm some sort of junkie trying to score. So sick of this crap! It shouldn't be this hard to get help.

    Will keep you all updated. 

  • RobynBRRobynB Posts: 1
    edited 10/18/2019 - 2:53 AM

    Hi Crackit

    I also have severe hypermobility and I am only 18. I have seen orthopedic surgeons, neurosurgeon, physio, osteopath, even had acupuncture. Right now I am gyming and seeing a personal trainer and think i have finally found the answer. I also have degenerative discs but nothing i can do to fix that. I can only work on preventing more. I have had back pain for 2 years. Sometimes its better, but it used to be very bad. I enjoy human anatomy and have learnt that its not just about posture and core ( though this is a big factor) but strengthening my back muscles with a trainer who knows about hypermobility really helps. My pain has eased up a lot. The trick is also in specific stretches that i have to do morning and night. I also use a foam roller to click my back. Hopefully when my muscles get stronger the joints wont need to stiffen up to protect me and the muscles will take over with that job. It is a lot of hard work and there are certain things I just cant do like twisting or my joints freak out. Understanding how the body works makes it so much easier to know  limits. 

    Your hypermobile friend


    This is the member's own experience and should be taken as such

    Edited by ~Liz Veritas-Health Forum Moderator

  • @RobynB I agree. That has helped me more than anything else. I hope you get some improvement. Let us know how it goes.

  • Update:

    I had a CT guided cortisone injection into my T10 costovertabrel joint, where the rib meets the spine. This was the area that showed degenerative changes / osteoarthritis.

    It felt a little better for a few hours, probably from the local anesthetic. No difference overall at all. 

    Back to the drawing board. I've been working calisthenics and yoga into my workout routine which is so far going well and helping a little bit. 

    I've also been meditating most mornings for months and that has helped too. Also taking about 10 000 mg combined dha / epa fish oil every day and a high quality collagen powder. 

    I guess I'll save up and try bpc 157 and or Tb 500.

  • Back has gotten worse since the cortisone shot. Lumbar spine is sore, thoracic is in pain 100% of the time, and it's all locked up - can't bend sideways to the left at all. Feels jammed or stuck along the tight of my thoracic spine, and when I try to move it I get cramps and spasms on the left side. 

    I've decided to take a break from doctors for a while. The next thing I will try is called Nandrolone. It is an anabolic steroid that can be prescribed for humans legally. Usually for people with serious diseases,  but I've found a clinic in Aus who can script it for me. I'll be trying a very low dose - as low as possible. Maybe 50mg per week or less. 

    Many anecdotal reports say that low dose nandrolone fixed the patient's back or joint pain within days. 

    I'll keep you all posted. In the mean time, I can't live without my heat pack. It's the only thing giving me any sort of relief.

  • I have the same problem. It started as a normal back pain until it became worst. It was diagnosed with ankylosing spondilitis and now im on a immunosuppressant meds along with anti inflammatory and muscle relaxant drugs. Mild stretching and sauna helps to lessen my stiffness.

  • @cracken have the meds helped you? I was convinced I had ankylosing spondylitis based on the symptoms sounding exactly like mine. Doctors have apparently ruled that out through scans though. Which muscle relaxant are you on? I imagine sauna would be good for it. 

  • Wow! I'm so glad to see people express the same symptoms I've had. I'm a 26 year old female. I initially thought this was because I have large breasts and they were weighing on my neck, but over the years it's gotten worse. I'm cracking my neck and back every 5 minutes and it sounds insane. Multiple cracks at once. Then I noticed my ankle and hands have been iffy. What if this is all connected to some early onset of neuropathy osteoarthritis? I may just be panicking, but I hate that docs don't take me seriously. I am very active and atheltic, so they assume since I'm in good health and fit that it can't be serious. But it literally drives me insane. I don't know if my spine is degenerating or if it's some hereditary onset of fibro or something.

    I've done acupuncture. No help. Got cortisol injections. Honestly I believe it made it even worse. I'm planning to purchase an inversion table so regularly stretch it out, and I also plan to see a chiropractor soon. I just want to feel free. There isn't a moment that goes by that I'm not conscious of my neck and upper back being so stiff and pressured. I feel so limited.

    Joined the app just for this thread. Hopefully we all stay in touch as we nail this thing. 

  • Hey all,

    Just chiming in, I’ve had the same pain for about two years at this point. I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia many years ago but recently this upper/middle back pain has been ruthless. I crack my back all day long over and over but also have a tight neck and my hips get tight and pop as well, the hip issues started before the back issues though. I’ve had a full spinal MRI, one doc said I had degenerated discs, next specialist said he didn’t see any of that. I haven’t tried dry needling but that’s what my ortho suggested and my neuro rendered me to a rheumatologist, not sure if I want to keep trying to find answers though as taking a break from the doctors has been nice.   The pressure and stiffness can drive me crazy, it’s tough to sleep and the only remedy I’ve found is repeatedly bending and stretching. I’m overweight and have been working on losing some pounds hoping that would help. I used to be a gymnast 15 years ago and I bike quite a bit at the moment. I’ve never heard of SRS but sounds interesting. 

  • @ashbash99 and @djmagichat thanks for chiming in. I share your frustration about doctors not taking things seriously. I am fit and active too. I think the cortisol shot made my back worse as well. I have been thinking about getting an inversion table for a long time. Will be interested to hear how you go. And yes, same issues with my hips too. 

    Unfortunately I can't get as much relief from the simple manoeuvres I used to do anymore. I still do them dozens of times throughout the day but there is a specific spot which is where I have osteoarthritis in the thoracic spine, where it is very hard to unlock. What I've found to be the most helpful to target this spot it holding onto something overhead with my right hand, and pulling down to stretch it out. It almost always clicks 3 or 4 joints and loosens it up and I can move properly again. I also do it with both hands and it cracks different spots higher up. 

    I've recently begun riding my bike to and from work, each day, about 12km each way. I think this has made a noticeable difference, as has doing callisthenics and yoga. It also means I'm rarely carrying a back pack! 

    I'm curious to know if anyone else who has this problem carries a backpack regularly. 

    Does anyone else have hypermobility syndrome? 

    For the first time in years, I think my condition has improved SLIGHTLY. 

    I've also started using low dose nandrolone (legally) at 50mg per week. Really hoping this makes a considerable difference.

  •  Im now searching for a doctor who specializes in myofascial pain. I have tons of trigger points pretty much all over so this is now the approach I will be taking. Reading up on it has made me believe this could be the issue with my muscles and chronic pain.

  • I’m 18 and I have some some similar problems I have to crack my back all day in between my shoulder blades and also my neck just to feel relief . It’s cracks on its own a lot to just by me breathing. I’m always in pain and I’m glad I finally found people with the same problems. I plan to go to a chiropractor and to tell my doctor because I’ve been dealing with this for too long. I also crack my pelvic bone a lot I can’t sleep on my right hip to long or it will hurt and cause my pelvic to pop like 3 times in 30 seconds . I’m not sure how to describe it in detail like everyone else is lol but I seem to have the same problems 

  • I relate to so many people on here. I crack my back hundreds of times of day. Just rolling my shoulders back or forward does the trick. Sometimes I lean up against something and stretch back. The pops relieve most of the pain for a VERY SHORT amount of time before it’s time to crack again. 

    It gets worse with the following:

    Laying on my stomach 

    Sitting (makes it a ton worse)

    What makes it better:

    Exercise (surprisingly)

    Stretching (temporarily)



    I’ve been dealing with this since 2011, and I’m 28 years old now. It’s causing me to lose sleep and deal with pain literally every waking moment. I’ve tried PT, dry needling, chiropractors and cryotherapy. All offer a level of relief, but all were temporary. Dry needling was the best. I created an account just to follow this to see if anyone has found a true relief of pain, not just temporary. I don’t wanna keep taking ibuprofen to keep the edge off. It’s wearing on me, and I’m desperate....

  • Hey guys, I can't describe the relief of finding more people with the same problem. Nobody seems to understand my situation so far.

    I have the same symptom. A constant feeling of tension/pressure/irritation on my lower and mid spine.

    I m 24 and this has been going on since I was 21. It started on the lower spine very close to the sacrumand over these 3 years it has expanded higher and higher. 

    As you guess the only possible relief comes from cracking my spine ( around 20-30 times a day).

    The biggest problem that comes with it is that it affects me ridiculously much psychologically. The constant subtle pressure triggers horrible thoughts and anxiety, making my life look like hell.

    And this keeps going on until I manage to crack every single vertebrae that feels under pressure.

    Once I do that, the pressure leaves and everything seems fine and normal again. But some days it's impossible to reach the higher spots and I stay in a terrifying headspace for the whole time.

    Back rubs and massages from my gf help my muscles losen up and make cracking easier. 

    I had xrays done that revealed sacralization of l-5 (if i remember correctly). The doctor suggested working out, to strengthen my core muscles, but didnt give me any satisfying answer about the cracking.

    Going to the gym didn't seem to help really. 

    I am probably gonna have an MRI some time soon. 

    The only thing that helped me (MASSIVELY) so far was smoking DMT and doing an Ayahuasca ceremony (ingestible DMT).

    I did those for other reasons (recreational and healing), but they had an almost immediate effect on my back.

    The pain and pressure almost completely dissapeared for about a month after each one of those experiences. I even tried cracking out of habit, but it didn't feel like it was needed anymore (I couldn't crack because there was nothing to crack).

    The best guess I can give as to how these helped is that they made me more aware and connected with my body. It felt like I had better control and more awareness of my muscles and I could therefore balance my own body better.

    The effect lasted about as long as the "afterglow" of these experiences (3-4 weeks) after which I went back to the regular state of pain and irritation.

    I am considering trying DMT again just to see if I am going to get the same effect.

    At this point I am pretty desperate for a solution as this affects everything from my business, to my relationship and my friendships. 

  • This has made my day to see recent activity here. Hello everyone.
    I'll briefly describe my experience too, nothing unusual though.
    I'm 20, have been experiencing this, as far as I remember, since 2015. I have minor scoliosis and also had minor injury with badly stretching my neck muscles in 2014. I think it all started from there and the fact that I've been sitting at a computer in an utterly bad posture for a quite long time then.

    How it is for me:
    Popping, snapping, cracking, clicking the upper part of my back, where spine and scapulas are next to each other (T7 I suppose), hundreds of times a day. Each click is causing moderate pain, literally ruining my day. I do so just to relief tension and constraint that have been accumulating in this area of my back after some time of not clicking it.

    I think I'm going to visit GP soon. Tired af of all of this, life could've been so much enjoyable right.

  • @Chriswilde that's interesting about the dmt and ayahuasca. I've had the same experience with other psychadelics, although the relief goes as soon as they wear off. It lead to me believing that it probably has something to do with subconscious tension and anxiety/stress and the central nervous system all relaxing while under the influence. Meditation and other medication/substances have not had the same affect as the psychadelic medicine.

  • jbowerjbower wisconsin Posts: 170

    I was reading one post and the person mentioned that it gets to the point where you just want to be alone and isolate yourself.  I know exactly how that feels as I am the same way.  I shut myself away from family and friends because the first thing everyone asks is, how is your back?  I always say the same.  Nothing has changed, it will never change.  I even do this to my wife and kids sometimes when my depression and pain is so bad.  I hate doing that to them, it shouldn't be that way.  Then the more I get sick of it the more depressed I get.

    It has been the same thing for well over a year now and nothing changes.  I do have a pump refill on the 26th.  I'm going to talk to them about pulling my scs out along with the paddle that's connected to the leads.  Then to see if it makes things better or worse.  Then I can get an MRI done after thats out.

    If the pain is still there I am going to ask them to move the catheter in my pain pump above the area of pain since the stimulator wont be in the way.  I almost think that if I get the stimulator and paddle out to have them fuse that area of my Thoracic spine.  I think it would help a lot.

    I get that horrible pain in my T spine and the only thing that helps is laying down on my back on the floor.  Which then it cracks and feels better.  The fusion would somewhat replace the floor in my mind?? Not sure if thats correct though.

    I so relate to the cracking but all that's doing is releasing gas bubbles in your joint.  It doesn't really cause any benefits unless you go to a chiropractor.  But the cracking does seem to feel good until I do it too much then it is more painful.

    That's why I still am pointing to having it fused.  Now to see if someone agrees.  I also don't want to have 3 different doctors doing surgery 3 times.  You would think one could take out th scs, move the catheter higher and fuse the area all at once.  I doubt it though.

  • Hi everyone 

    I have been following this forum for a few years and have suffered from this back problem for almost 5 years. I Was so excited when I found this to see that I’m not the only one and I have been following it with the hopes that someone will share what the cure is for this terrible back problem. I would like to share what had helped me become 80 % better. 

    Just to give a little background, I have Had to crack my back pretty much every minute during the day. I actually had become good at hiding it when I’m around people because I just make it seem like I’m looking behind or bending to pick something or passing someone something but I’m actually cracking my back. Going to bed is a nightmare because I would literally have to twist turn and crack For at least an hour  until I fall asleep. Literally the only thing I think about while suffering to sleep is constantly imagining how if only I Was flexible enough to do a proper back bend/bridge that every piece of my spine would stretch the way it needs to. Recently it’s been so stiff and tense that even when I twist I sometimes have to force the crack and a lot of times it would not crack so I don’t even get that 1 minute of relief. It was torturous when I recently had to sit on a super long flight from the US to the UAE. However while being in Dubai, UAE I was recommended to try an unusual type of massage and I’m proud to say that I feel about 80% better and wanted to recommend it to you all because I understand how frustrating this pain is. 

    The massage therapist, Adna at this ladies only salon called Grand Flora (Rashidiyah) is an older lady but she is known for actually burping throughout the process. I’m not too sure why she does that, but From what I understand It’s like some weird way of removing evil eye and I guess trapped gas in your body especially your stomach and back. It was actually very painful especially in certain points where she found needed to be worked through. It was kind of like acupressure And there’s still bruises in those areas till now. However I have to say by doing that has definitely helped me not have to twist anymore. It was a super weird massage because at one point she was standing on me like a balance beam and cracking it by pushing her feet down and she also stretched me out in all kinds of ways. But I have to say even though I hoped to get out of there completely cured, I felt a significant improvement. I could still feel some tension more in the middle along the spine but the bottom right and left felt a lot better. It’s been about 4 days since the massage and I haven’t had the urge to crack side to side at all. The only cracking I do is elongating my spine and cracking the middle which is easier to do in public. She did tell me that cracking is really bad to do and it makes it worse. Im thinking of going back for one more massage before I go back to the US so that she can focus on the middle/spine area a little more. 

  • jbowerjbower wisconsin Posts: 170

    Kayla, do you know what the massage name is called if any? I wouldn't even know how to find something like that here in the US.  Please let me know if you do as it sounds very interesting.  

    I have always wanted to see what it is like having someone who knows what they are doing walk on my back.  I really prefer going to massage parlors ran by Chinese because they understand a lot about the body.  They really know what they are doing.

    I know when I was in PT they worked on stretching a lot along with massage and dry needling.  All that combined would stop the urge of cracking but like everything else it is short lived.

    Here in Milwaukee, WI they recently opened this place that does assisted stretching which I think would be something worth trying out.  I think it would be a little weird though having a stranger stretching me out.. lol

  • I was hoping for an 'Ah-ha!' moment as I read through this forum, but at the very least, like many of you, I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one.  I'm 37 and have the same daily/constant thoracic discomfort.  I have over the past 2 years been told I have disc degenerative disease that then was later diagnosed as 3 herniated discs (T6, T8, T9).  I have had two injections with no relief.  I have seen multiple PTs, done dry needling, massage, and acupuncture.  I have to say that the massage was crucial in removing the most nagging sore scapular muscles which does help when they flare up.  I started doing pilates once a week which has greatly strengthened my core which helps my lower back pain, but does not seem to be helping thoracic pain.  It does seem to help in loosening my back overall though and I find myself feeling better the day or so after.  I moved to a harder bed which seems to have helped.  I now do cross over symmetry workout every morning to focus on scapular stability and strengthening that does help as long as I do it daily.  

    I recently got a second opinion and a couple new ideas came up 1) Take Lyrica (pregabalin) 2) Spinal cord stimulator implant.  Not that interested in taking a pill twice a day, but I feel it's worth a shot for a period of time.  Not super excited about idea of having a spinal cord stimulator implanted and frankly as long as I can move I'm going to avoid that one.

    I like many of you struggle with the mental aspects of this.  It gets in the way of being present and creates anxiety about not being able to be 100% for my wife and kids.  I have considered seeking mental health help to see what tactics I could employ to help.  

    I will keep you all posted on path of taking medications and mental health.  Looking forward to hearing about your journeys.

  • I saw a new PT person with a full assesment and she concluded my lat as the possible culprit with everything else just being the victim. Years of overuse of the other muscles have compromised my posture leading to tighter pecs and lat muscles on my dominant side. Going to start stretching the pecs and lats and see where this goes. My range of motion improved significantly with dry needling the dominant lat muscle and relaxed my pec muscle to where my shoulder isnt pulling forward as much. Will update with progress.

  • I'm almost 21 years old and I am dealing with this same issue. It's only been around a month however but its very mild and annoying. I have been to a chiropractor and it helped very minimally. For my work I sit a lot, and at home I sit a lot. I have also been dealing with hip pain for the past few years, very mild but annoying nonetheless. Sometimes I have flare ups which make it worse. I have looked up symptoms with no avail to what it could actually be. I am healthy otherwise (not overweight, in decent shape). I can "hear" my joints grinding and popping with each other, and if I leave them alone long enough, I can pop them back in to place. Just pulling my shoulders back can make it pop. Hopefully someone here has a solution. I have never 


    Hey guys, I might have finally found the solution. I don't guarantee this will work for everyone, but I think it will for many.

    What did the trick for me was the Wim Hof Breathing technique in combination with cold showers. 

    For those who don't know what the Wim Hof breathing is a simple search on Google or Youtube will give you plenty of results. It's a breathing technique that supposedly reboots the autonomic nervous system. It has been found to help with multiple illnesses as well as mental problems like depression and anxiety.

    So I gave it a shot and I have been doing this breathing exercise 1-3 times a day for 3 weeks now (at least 1 of these times together with a cold shower).

    In the first days the result would be just me being able to crack my back more easily than usually just straight after the breathing and the cold shower. 

    But as days, progressed things kept improving. My back tension got less and less and the same happened to the need to crack my spine.

    Now 3 weeks later the tension and the cracking are almost completely eliminated. This is the first time I have been free from this in 4 years and I gotta say it feels absolutely liberating and amazing. 

    At the same time, my mood, resilience to stress and mental clarity improved noticeably. 

    The exact sequence of how I do it daily is:

    - my regular hot shower

    - do the wim hof breathing while still in the shower

    - switch to fully cold water and allow my body to get used to it

    - then do wim hof breathing 1 or 2 more times randomly in the day

    This will work best if you fully put your conscious attention to the spot on your back where the tension is while doing the breathing exercise. 

    I think the issue all this time has been psycho-somatic and that's why it has been so hard to find a cure for it. For me it was probably stress causing me to unconsciously tense my back muscles, which put pressure on the nerves which caused me even more stress. The breathing exercise helps reset the body and reduces stress, probably giving my back muscles the relaxation they needed. 

    Let me know if it worked for anyone else of you. 

  • Hey @crackit  and others I think i might found a solution.

    A little backstory

    Im suffering from the exact same back problem like you guys for like 10 years,and it got worse and worse.I tried everything but nothing helped,maybe massage a little if done correctly,and some hot showers a bit.For years my upper right side of my spine in one exact point hurt constantly and cracking like hell always.After that came my neck and my hips hurting.Also i could barely sleep,and in the morning i felt like i was beaten up,in pain after like 3-4 hours sleeping.

    So the solution:

    Im not helaled yet,but im like 50% better in 2-3 weeks.I started some month ago on 190cm 97kg averagly muscular body tipe,i went weekly 4 gym,and 1 swimming,helped a little maybe like 5%-10%,then 17 days ago,i heard a story about Mikhaela Peterson and her Carnivore diet.So i thought why not, i love steak.After like 10 days,i started to feel less pain,less tension in my muscles,better sleeps,i can sit longer hours,the crack and pop still there but maybe less times,so i feel like it is improving day by day.It may reduced a lot of inflammation,so my body can heal.I will see if it keeps improving in the next 2 months.If you have any questions,i will check this comment setcion 

  • ChrisWilde, do you have the Wim Hof breathing regime you could send me? I'm extremely interested in trying it. As many of us know, I will grab on to the next new thing that could potentially help relieve. I find the psycho-somatic thing interesting. It would definitely explain why some days can become grueling and others days are unbearable. Does everyone get relief by laying down?

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