What is Cupping Therapy?
Cupping therapy is an ancient form of alternative healing where a fine Local suction is produced on the skin using heated compresses. The process mainly takes place in Asia but also in Eastern Europe, Latin America, and Eastern Asia. Cupping is often described as a pseudo-science and its use as quackery. However, there are quite a number of people who have been using it for quite a long time as a legitimate form of healing.
Cupping therapy works on a simple principle. Warm, cool and a touch of pressure are applied to acupoints on the hands or feet while the patient is positioned on a reclining chair. The warmth from the heat of the cups relaxes the muscles and the body parts that are being treated. This then relieves the tension from the muscles and tissues. This in turn promotes the flow of blood through the different channels of the body and this can be beneficial as it helps to detoxify and cleanse the entire system.
Myofascial release is one of the most popular uses of cupping therapy. Myofascial release refers to the different trigger points located on different parts of the body that act as trigger points for pain and ailments. It is commonly used as relief techniques for low back pains. These trigger points are often activated by the pressure applied on the areas and by the presence of warm cups during the massage session.
In fact, some practitioners believe that this form of therapy is an authentic form of acupuncture. Because of the close relationship between acupuncture and cupping therapy, some practitioners have been calling themselves as “chiromax” or “moxibustion” therapists. Their clinic is called as holistic medical clinics and they offer a free service of non-invasive acupuncture and cupping therapy sessions. However, not all practice is regulated by the Acupuncture council of Great Britain. The Acupuncture council in the United Kingdom does not approve the practice of acupuncture and moxibustion therapies in the country.
A study conducted by researchers at Rush University Medical College in Chicago reported that wet cupping therapy effectively reduces the swelling of the feet compared to when the feet were immersed in hot water. The reduction in swelling was noticed within 10 days of the therapy. The reduction in swelling was due to the reduction in toxins within the feet, as reported by the study. Researchers observed that there were significant reductions in the levels of toxins such as lactic acid, propionyl cysteine, glycogen and urea acid in the feet. They further concluded that the reduction in toxins helped to prevent edema.
Some of the factors which may help to reduce the pain may include relaxation techniques of the patient and the use of certain oils by the therapist. A Cupping therapist should know the proper technique to perform on a patient and the various methods which can be used by the patient. Some practitioners may follow a certain system of steps to provide relief to the patient and this may help to reduce the pain experienced by the patient.
In traditional Chinese medicine, there are various ailments that can be treated through the method of cupping therapy. Examples of these ailments include external and internal hemorrhoids, colitis, varicose veins, muscle spasms, eczema, varicose joints and problems of the lymph nodes. Other problems which may be treated through this method include muscle pain, respiratory problems, cramp in the abdomen, urinary tract infections, sinusitis, respiratory illness and even headaches. The use of glass cups is one of the main aspects of cupping therapy.
The reason why the cupping therapy method works is because it helps to introduce air into the blood vessels. When air comes into contact with these areas, it helps to dilate the blood vessels and this reduces the amount of inflammation and pain experienced by the person. If you want to experience a warm, relaxing and blood massage, then you may want to consider trying this form of bodywork.