Cupping therapy is a technique of vacuuming and suctioning areas of the meridian system of the body in order to draw out toxins, control pain, increase blood flow, help a person relax, and facilitate a smoother movement of qi energies.
Originally attributed to Chinese civilization, the beginnings of cupping is actually unknown. It is a practice that has been historically noted in places that include North America (by the Native Americans), ancient Greece and Egypt, and throughout Europe.
Cupping as a form of treatment was first recorded by Ge Hong, a Chinese alchemist. Because of this, this system is sometimes known as Chinese Cupping Therapy. The Chinese have definitely used this therapy to a large degree. It’s classified as a branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Other components of TCM are Tuina, acupressure, herbal medicine, acupuncture, Qigong, and Moxibustion.
Cupping Therapy as a Complement to Acupuncture and Massage
The acupuncturist Cleveland or massage therapist will lubricate your skin with baby oil or massage oil before they place the cups on the skin. The air within each cup is heated before placing the cup upside down directly on the skin. The cups create a vacuum effect making them attach to the body. These cups are left on the body for a certain period of time.
The cups are usually applied on the back of the patient, but will be applied occasionally on other areas of the body including the neck, thighs, and abdomen.
Purplish discolorations and round welt-like marks is the effect of the therapy. Following treatment, those marks may remain on the skin for a couple of weeks. Although these marks may appear alarming, it is a healthy sign that the treatment works. To cover them if you need to go out, simply wear clothing that can hide these skin discolorations.
Modern Day Cups versus Traditional Cups
Cups used for hundreds of years for cupping therapy were created from hollowed out animal horns or bamboo. These days, a range of cupping sets are offered in the market, most of them are made of glass, and some are made of silicone and plastic. The newest cupping sets include the use of vacuum pump and magnets in place of using fire. Some cupping practitioners use silicone cups and call the therapy baguanfa.
Conditions That Can Be Treated Through Cupping Therapy:
- Frail immune systems
- Sports medicine
- Back pain and sciatica
- Rheumatic conditions
- Muscular pains and aches