Just about everyone develops cracking or grinding noises in the neck with degeneration. Most of us do not pay attention to these noises but they can become quite maddening if you really pay attention to them. You need to ignore these noises.
Ligaments (joint capsules and tendons) can also “flick” over a bone spur and cause similar noises.
Arthritis is generated by genetics, injury, occupation, advocation and metabolics. Don’t worry about the arthritis unless it is painful as there is nothing you can do about it and many times, arthritis is not symptomatic (noises don’t count).
Donald Corenman, MD, DC is a highly-regarded spine surgeon, considered an expert in the area of neck and back pain. Trained as both a Medical Doctor and Doctor of Chiropractic, Dr. Corenman earned academic appointments as Clinical Assistant Professor and Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, and his research on spine surgery and rehabilitation has resulted in the publication of multiple peer-reviewed articles and two books.