Qué pasa cuando el cuello cruje?

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Hacer crujir el cuello uno mismo conlleva más riesgos para la salud que beneficios. Genera un hábito inadecuado que puede derivar en otros problemas.

Crujir el cuello es un hábito común de observar. Pero ¿qué pasa cuando el cuello cruje? ¿Es bueno hacer esto? Vamos a revisar qué es lo que se sabe al respecto y qué consejos dan los especialistas sobre el tema.

Hacer crujir el cuello puede generar una sensación de liberación de la presión o rigidez que se siente en la zona cervical. Pero no es raro observar que, lo que comenzó como un intento por disminuir la tensión en la zona, se transforma en una especie de tic que termina siendo perjudicial.

El cuello que cruje

El cuello es una zona del cuerpo que puede traernos problemas en algún momento de la vida. Se estima que un 20 % de los adultos experimentarán dolor o tensión en esta zona.

Algunos de los síntomas que suelen aparecer, entre otros, son los siguientes:

  • Dolores.
  • Sensación de tensión.
  • Limitación y dolor con los movimientos de la cabeza.
  • Crujido al movimiento.
  • Adormecimiento o debilidad en miembros superiores.

De manera frecuente, las tensiones en cuello pueden derivar en cefaleas,   y, en algunas ocasiones, pueden convertirse en dolores crónicos, tanto del cuello como de la cabeza.

Las causas que provocan dolor o tensión en la zona cervical, ya sea que hablemos de dolor agudo o crónico, son muchas, aunque en su mayoría son benignas. La causa más frecuente en adultos es la osteoartrosis cervical, propia del envejecimiento normal de las articulaciones.

Además, hay que agregar que hay otros factores que contribuyen a favorecer las tensiones musculares y empeorar los síntomas. Algunos de estos son los siguientes:

Mujer con dolor cervical

Es primordial enseñar al paciente los beneficios de una buena higiene postural para crear hábitos que protejan todas las articulaciones corporales, sin limitarse solo a la región cervical.

El objetivo del tratamiento del dolor de cuello, por parte de los especialistas, se puede resumir en tres puntos principales:

  • Minimizar la contractura muscular de la zona.
  • Maximizar la funcionalidad de la región cervical.
  • Disminuir el dolor.

¿Qué produce el crujido del cuello?

Por un lado, pequeños crujidos al movilizar de manera normal la cabeza se pueden deber a osteoartrosis. En este caso no producen problemas.

Por otro lado, cuando hablamos de hacer crujir el cuello de manera brusca con la finalidad de aliviar tensión, la teoría más aceptada se denomina mecanismo de cavitación. Pero ¿qué es lo que produce el sonido o crujido?

Cuando se hace crujir el cuello u otra parte del cuerpo, las cápsulas  que están alrededor de la articulación se estiran. Estas cápsulas contienen líquido y, al estirarlas, este ejerce menos presión sobre la articulación. 

A medida que disminuye la presión, los líquidos se convierten en gas. Cuando se produce esta transformación se genera el ruido o crujido articular. Este mecanismo se reproduce, por lo general, con movimientos máximos o bruscos de las articulaciones. Veamos si esto puede provocar algún daño.

¿Hacer crujir el cuello es beneficioso o puede traer riesgos?

Lo primero que diremos es que no se aconseja realizar movimientos bruscosni llevar una articulación al tope de su movimiento como hábito o de manera constante. Sin embargo, esto es diferente si lo realiza el fisioterapeuta.

Hacerlo uno mismo, de manera forzada o incorrecta, puede generar daño y mayor necesidad de repetir el hábito. Por ese motivo, está desaconsejado.

En dolor en los músculos puede deberse al sedentarismo.

¿Qué daño se puede provocar cuando el cuello cruje?

Algunos de los daños principales que pueden producirse son los siguientes:

  • Pinzamiento de alguna raíz nerviosa.
  • Desgarro de un vaso sanguíneo y riesgo de derrame cerebral.
  • Tensión o contractura muscular.
  • Favorece la osteoartrosis.

¿Qué debemos hacer si hay tensión cervical?

Como conclusión diremos que se debe evitar hacer crujir uno mismo el cuello a través de un movimiento brusco o máximo del mismo. Este acto es malo para la salud de las vértebras.

Aunque parezca generar un alivio de tensión en la zona, lo único que se logra es generar un mal hábito que se repetirá y producirá más problemas que soluciones.

Ante la necesidad de liberar la tensión o ante la presencia de dolores cervicales, se aconseja realizar una consulta al especialista.

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