The therapy of cupping has been used in China for thousands of years. Special glass cups are used and a flame is lit inside the cup before quickly placing the cup on the patient’s body. This decrease in oxygen from the flame is what creates the suction necessary for the therapeutic effect. Once the cup is in place, oil can be applied to the skin and the cups can be moved around an area of the body, or they can be left stationary to target a specific acupuncture point or muscle. During a
cupping procedure the patient should not experience pain but rather a warm, pulling, stretching sensation.
Benefits of cupping
Cupping increases the flow of blood throughout the blood vessels and increases the production of both red and white blood cells, making it extremely beneficial to the circulatory system. In Chinese medicine all the pain, either physical or
emotional is caused by blockages in the flow of Energy (Qi) or Blood. Whenever a cup is placed on the body it greatly increases the flow of Qi, Blood, and nutrients to that area. Other therapeutic actions of cupping includes warming the body
dispelling dampness accumulation, detoxification, and reducing swelling; all of which help to treat a number of disorders ranging from skin diseases to muscle aches and pains to digestive and nervous system issues.
Generally after a cupping treatment there will be marks left on the skin, The most common misunderstanding is that these are big “bruises”. They’re not. They’re actually a byproduct of inflammation that had been lodged in the tissues. Bleeding and an influx of fluids can occur at the site of an injury, which may lead to stagnation of circulation to the area, resulting in pain, dysfunction, and chronic conditions. The suction cup over the area of pain can draw up this “old” non circulating blood and fluids (products of inflammation) to the surface of the skin. Once that old blood and fluids have come to the surface of the skin, the circulation of new blood, oxygen, and nutrients will be restored which will help heal the damaged tissues.
The stagnation accumulated underneath the skin is what creates the marks that cupping is so famous for. The marks range in colour from pink and red, to dark purple and blue—with the more severe injuries and trauma creating the darkest marks. These marks can last up to 2-3 weeks, however, most are gone within a few days.