Cupping is an ancient practice and can be found as far back as 1550 B.C. in Egyptian texts. It was practiced in ancient Chinese and Middle Eastern cultures as well. Cupping has been adopted by practitioners across many different forms of eastern medicine, including Ayurveda. It is used to treat a wide range of health issues including, but not limited to:
- Neck, shoulder, and back pain
- Joint problems
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Digestive issues
- High blood pressure
We perform cupping therapy by placing specialized cups on your skin for several minutes to create suction. You can think of it as the opposite of a massage – pulling your tissue up rather than massing your tissue down. Depending on your needs, cupping can also be combined with acupuncture.
Your practitioner will create the suction in the cups by first putting a flammable substance in the cups and setting it on fire. As the flame goes out, your practitioner will carefully place the cup upside down on your skin. As the air within the cup cools, it creates a vacuum that causes your skin and underlying soft tissues to be suctioned up into the cup. In most cases, these cups are left in place for a few minutes and then gently removed.
Benefits of cupping include reduced pain and inflammation, a greater sense of calm and well-being, decreased pain and irritation caused by skin, joint, and muscle issues, improved digestion, and lowered blood pressure.
Side effects are generally mild and may include bruising where the cups were placed and minor discomfort. Bruising and marks left from the therapy typically last a few days, but may take more than a week to fade.
If you have questions about cupping or would like to make an appointment at Acuveda, please call us at (562) 646-7476.