Dec 19 2013

What is Cupping Therapy?

Used in many Asian countries, cupping is a form of Traditional Chinese treatment dating back to 3000 B.C. – outlined in one of the oldest medical textbooks in the world, Ebers Papyrus.  In the actual technique, a partial vacuum is created inside cups placed on the skin, by means of heat or suction.  The cups are positioned on top of softer, lubricated tissues, allowing for stronger seals with the edge of the cup.  Today, plastic and glass are more prevalent, replacing the horn, bronze or bamboo cups used in ancient times.

The sensation created by the cupping is opposite the one of a massage because the integumentary system and its underlying tissues are sucked up rather than pushed down.  The vacuum created in the cups draws up the skin and opens pores, stimulating the flow of blood and lymph to the affected area, thus clearing up the toxins from the body’s tissues and fluids.  Cupping treatments often result in minor bruising, usually painless, which disappears in a few days following the treatment.

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