Though many forms of alternative medicine have become common place, Cupping therapy is one that is just starting to get the recognition is deserves. It is a method that uses suction to promote blood flow to an area that is experiencing pain or another issue. The vacuum is created by using fire or an electrical pump. The cup is placed on the area and left there for no more than 15 minutes at a time. There is no pain with this procedure, but the patient may feel some slight pulling where the cup is placed. Many believe that it can help areas that have deep scar tissue and knots in the muscles. It is also know to help areas where there are swelling. Once they are removed, they leave a red circle that stays in place for a few days. There is no tenderness in the area and many feel instant relief.
The Different Types of Cupping
Though it seems very straightforward, there are a couple different types of cupping. The most common type is done with fire. This method of cupping acupuncture soaks a cotton ball with alcohol. The cotton ball is lit and then swabbed around the cup. The fire only burns for just a couple seconds, or enough to remove the oxygen inside the cup. It’s then placed on the skin and attached through suction. Some people use massage oils on the edge of the cups to allow them to be slid around. Some will call this “moving cupping.” As the cup draws blood to the area, the capillaries may rupture. This leaves some dark spots. It’s like a bruise, but its’ not the same as with trauma. The other method is dry cupping and it is a bit more difficult to get the cup to stick. Cupping can treat:
• Musculoskeletal Conditions
• Respiratory Diseases
• Connective Tissue Disorders
The Cups Used
In acupuncture moxibustion, there are various sizes in the cups that are used. They also come in different shapes. They can be shaped like a bell or a ball, the choice is up to the practitioner. The size can be anywhere from 1-3” and the size is dependent upon the area where it will be placed. Smaller cups are placed on the face, while larger cups are reserved for bigger muscular areas. Today’s cups are made from plastic and or glass. In earlier times, they used pottery, bamboo and even bronze cups. This controversial procedure has seem to provide great comfort to those who are suffering from many diverse situations.