Cupping? What is it?

What is Cupping?

Cupping is an ancient method used by the Chinese and many other cultures for over 2000 years as a medical treatment for many ailments.

Heated glass cups are placed on the body which increase blood circulation to the area, relaxing the muscles, pull out toxins and promoting faster healing.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) the cups are usually placed along meridian lines depending on treatment required for about 10-15 minutes and are sometimes moved to create a massage effect.

Chinese medicine practitioners typically use glass cups which are turned upside down and heated with a flame burning out the oxygen to create a vacuum effect which draws the blood closer to the surface.

Cupping has lately been under the spotlight due to the Olympic champions, Michael Phelps and Cody Miller among other world class athletes sporting bruise-like circular hickeys (they are not bruises).

The discoloration marks left on the skin after cupping can be red to purple and can last several days however they are not usually painful.

For a look at cupping see below video:

Does Cupping work?

Several studies have shown the benefits of cupping whether used as a stand alone treatment or as an adjunct to other treatments especially acupuncture.

One study found cupping significantly reduced chronic neck and shoulder pain from a severity score of 9.7 down to 3.6 compared to no treatment at all.

Another study which was a meta-analysis of 550 studies showed cupping therapy combined with other TCM treatments was significantly superior to other treatments alone especially for herpes zoster, facial paralysis, acne & cervical spondylosis.

Cupping is also believed to influence an immune response by causing localized inflammation which can trigger cytokine production.

According to a review on cupping research in the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, Kalichman and his co-author Efgeni Rozenfeld noted that:

Mechanically cupping increases blood circulation, whereas physiologically it activates the immune system and stimulates the mechanosensitive fibres, thus leading to a reduction in pain.

There is initial scientific evidence that dry cupping is able to reduce musculoskeletal pain.

Since cupping is inexpensive, non-invasive and low risk (if performed by a trained practitioner) therapeutic modality, we believe that it should be included in the arsenal of musculoskeletal medicine.

What can Cupping treat?

Cupping can help promote circulation, remove toxins, create an immune response and stimulate Qi or energy to the affected area.

Common conditions treated range from general back and muscle pain, headaches, colds and flu, poor circulation, anxiety, allergies, fevers and aches.

What does it cost?

At Star Chinese Therapy a 15 minute session costs $20 but it is highly recommended to include cupping with other therapies such as massage or acupuncture.

Sometimes it is beneficial to do more than one session after the initial marks have subsided with several treatments giving the best outcome.

Make a booking with Star Chinese Therapy on 9791 8996 or drop in at 1/100 Victoria Street Bunbury.

To your health and wellness.


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