Why Is My Sternum Popping

Why Is My Sternum Popping?

It’s time to take a look at why your sternum pops when you exercise. There are many reasons why your sternum may pop up. Some of them include:

1) You have too much fat around your sternum.

If you don’t want to hear it, then just stop exercising or do something else that causes stress on your body.

2) Your sternum is not strong enough.

Try doing some exercises with your hands instead of your feet. That will make your sternum stronger.

3) You have bad posture.

Stand up straight and try to keep your back straight while doing exercises such as push ups, sit ups, pull ups etc…

4) You have poor flexibility in shoulders and neck muscles.

Try stretching out your neck muscles.

5) You have tightness in your stomach area.

Try eating healthy foods and drink plenty of water.

6) You have a thyroid problem which causes problems in thyroid hormones causing low blood sugar levels and other symptoms such as fatigue, weakness, weight loss etc…

7) Your diet is lacking in nutrients. You need to start eating healthy foods such as berries, nuts, green vegetables, meat and other nutritious foods.

8) Your sternum has become weak because of a medical condition that prevents it from developing properly in the womb.

There are many more reasons why your sternum pops up and most of the time you will not suffer any pain or other symptoms. It just pops up for no reason at all. Check with your doctor if you do experience pain or other symptoms though.

Sternum Pain No Pop

Sternum popping can be caused by many things. Some people experience pain when their sternum pops up while others don’t feel anything at all. If you experience pain, then you should contact a medical professional immediately. This is especially true if the pain persists for more than a few days. Other signs that warrant a trip to the doctor include shortness of breath, difficulty breathing and a crackling noise heard when inhaling or exhaling.

If you hear a crackling noise when inhaling or exhaling then you probably have excess mucus in your lungs. In this case it is probably because you are a smoker and/or you have asthma and/or you have been suffering from a cold recently. In any case all of these issues can be dangerous to your health so you should see a doctor as soon as possible even if the pain goes away on its own or it comes back again in the future.

Sometimes sternum pain can be a sign of a life threatening medical condition such as heart problems, lung problems or even intestinal blockage. If you suffer from frequent chest pains then you should probably see your doctor just to make sure everything is OK. Even if you don’t experience any pain at all, it still might be a good idea to get yourself checked out if you have any serious symptoms that seem out of the ordinary.

How to Pop Your Chest Bone Out of Place

Your sternum bone is very strong so it rarely pops out of place even if you do something really strenuous like an intense weight lifting routine. Even so, there are things that you can do to force it out of place such as receiving a really hard punch to the chest or taking a really hard fall directly onto your chest.

So if you manage to pop it out of place, you will probably experience sternum pain and will need to get it put back into place immediately. It is usually not a difficult procedure and your doctor will be able to pop it back in easily. If you force it out of place regularly then there is a possibility that the muscles and ligaments surrounding your sternum could become weakened.

If this is the case then it could be more difficult to pop it back into place. If your sternum is severely out of place then you may need to wear a brace until the muscles and ligaments strengthen again and hold it firmly in place.

Torn Cartilage

The most common cause of torn cartilage in the chest area is a direct impact to the chest followed by severe stretching or pulling. This can easily happen to football players, martial artists and people performing stunts. If you have torn the cartilage in this area then it will be very painful and you won’t be able to take a deep breath. You can try taking anti-inflammatory medication to help deal with the swelling and chest pain but if the problem persists or gets worse then you should see a doctor right away. The doctor will probably recommend surgery to repair the torn cartilage.

Blood Clot

If you have a blood clot in the chest area then you could have a potentially life threatening medical condition. You will experience chest pain, shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat and possibly even difficulty speaking. The symptoms will most likely be ongoing or they will progressively get worse. If this is the case then you should immediately seek emergency medical treatment as it could be a warning sign of a heart attack.

Broken Ribs

If you experience pain in your chest that is localized to one particular area and seems to radiate outwards then there is a possibility that you have broken a rib or two. The most common cause of broken ribs is taking a hard hit to the chest or taking a hard fall directly on your chest. Most of the time broken ribs pain will go away after a few weeks but it is very important that you do not exert yourself too much as doing so could cause complications such as punctured lungs or internal bleeding. If your broken ribs are extremely painful or causing you to experience a lot of trouble breathing then you should seek emergency medical treatment immediately.

Swollen lymph Nodes

If you experience pain in your chest along with swelling in the armpit or neck areas then there is a possibility that you have swollen lymph nodes. There are several different reasons why this could be happening. One possibility is that you have an infection and another is that you have cancerous cells in those areas and they have become swollen and inflamed. The best thing that you can do is to schedule an appointment with your doctor so that he can assess the situation and decide how to proceed with treatment if necessary.

Thyroid Problems

If you have an overactive thyroid then you may experience a number of different symptoms such as weight loss despite having an increase in appetite, bowel movement problems, increased heart rate, anxiety, and more. If you experience one or some of these symptoms it is a good idea to seek medical treatment. Your doctor will be able to run tests in order to determine whether or not you an overactive thyroid.

Kidney Stones

A kidney stone is a rock hard piece of material that can form inside your kidney. These stones can be made of many different substances such as phosphate, calcium or even protein and don’t always result in symptoms. If you experience very painful episodes that seem to come out of nowhere then you may have a kidney stone. The pain will usually be located in the lower part of your back and might also feel like it is radiating outwards. You might also experience nausea, vomiting, fever and chills.

If you experience any of these symptoms then you should seek emergency medical attention right away.


If you have been experiencing a series of coughs that result in the production of yellowish mucus then there is a possibility that you have contracted pneumonia. This sickness usually results in fever, chills and a hacking cough that will produce thick mucus. If you are elderly or have a weak immune system then it is even more likely that you will contract pneumonia. If you think that you might have this condition then it is very important that you seek medical treatment immediately as pneumonia can quickly become life-threatening if left untreated.

Lung Cancer

If you have been a long-term smoker or have been around second hand smoke for most of your life then it is very likely that you have damaged cells in your lungs. These cells will continue to grow and divide even after you have stopped exposing them to cigarette smoke and may very well develop into lung cancer. The disease usually does not produce many noticeable symptoms until it has become late stage; the most common symptom being a lingering cough that produces blood stained mucus. If you experience this symptom then you should seek medical attention immediately as it could be a sign of cancer.


Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is something that results from long-term exposure to things like second hand smoke, air pollution and even working in a job that requires you to be exposed to chemicals on a regular basis. The disease makes it hard for the sufferer to breathe and can eventually lead to death if left untreated. Sufferers of the disease will experience symptoms such as phlegm, wheezing, shortness of breath and more. If you experience these symptoms it is important that you seek medical attention right away as it could help to prevent the disease from becoming life-threatening.


Emphysema is very similar to COPD except it usually develops in people who have smoked heavily for most of their lives. This disease causes permanent damage to the lungs and makes it very hard for the victim to breathe. The shortness of breath often comes without warning and might even wake sufferers from their sleep. Other symptoms include a lingering cough, fatigue, chest pain, loss of weight and more. If you suspect that you might have emphysema then you should seek medical attention right away.

Asbestos Exposure

It is very possible to damage your lungs without ever smoking a cigarette, by being exposed to asbestos on a regular basis. This mineral was used in thousands of building materials up until the 1970’s. If you worked around this material on a regular basis then you could be suffering from an illness called Asbestos-Related Disease (ARD). The disease does not usually manifest itself until decades after the initial exposure and there is no known cure for this type of illness. Some of the most common symptoms are shortness of breath, persistent cough and pain in the chest.

Other Causes

There are a variety of other causes of lung damage and diseases. If you are concerned that you might have a problem then you should seek medical attention right away as it could help to save your life or at least improve your quality of life.

Sources & references used in this article:

Surgical management of the symptomatic unstable sternum with pectoralis major muscle flaps by EB Cabbabe, SW Cabbabe – Plastic and reconstructive surgery, 2009 – journals.lww.com

Every breath you take by M Alpert – Scientific American, 2005 – JSTOR

Sternal wound complications: management and results by C Serry, PC Bleck, H Javid, JA Hunter… – The Journal of thoracic …, 1980 – Elsevier

From My Mother’s Side by LC Brown – Sketch, 1976 – lib.dr.iastate.edu