Cupping therapy has been practised in China for many centuries. It involves the application of small plastic cups on the body over acupuncture points and over tight sore muscles. The air is sucked out of the cup using a suction gun, which draws up the skin, muscle and fascia. The technique is believed to open up the skin’s pores, which helps to stimulate the flow of blood, balance and realign the flow of qi. It breaks up obstructions, and creates an avenue for toxins to be drawn out of the body. The cups are left on the skin for between 5 – 15 minutes depending on each individual case. On deeper pain the cups my be applied and then moved causing the skin and muscle to be pulled, this is called gliding cupping. It is very relaxing and helps to relax and heal the tissues.
Is cupping safe? Does it hurt?
While cupping is considered relatively safe (especially air cupping, which does not include the risk of fire and heat), it can cause some swelling and bruising on the skin. As the skin under a cup is drawn up, the blood vessels at the surface of the skin expand. This may result in small, circular bruises on the areas where the cups were applied. These bruises are usually painless, however, and disappear within a few days of treatment.
In addition, there are several instances where cupping should not be performed. Patients with inflamed skin; cases of high fever or convulsions; and patients who bleed easily, are not suitable candidates for cupping. Pregnant women should not have cupping on their stomach or lower back. If the cups are being moved, they should not cross bony areas, such as the ridges of the spine or the shoulder blades.
If you think Cupping and Acupuncture would be great for you, contact Bryony and make an appointment, 07851 098268 or use the contact form.