With the many different alternative medications and therapies from the East that have conquered the Western hemisphere, it is not a wonder for many Westerners to know about Chinese Cupping. One of the most popular and oldest Chinese medication, its earliest recorded form in history goes back to as early as the 4th century.
In the ancient times, animal horns were used as cups, which were placed over particular points across the human body. Presently though, one can see a wide selection of choices when it comes to the cups being used by practitioners. They include bamboo, glass, iron, pottery and many others. Glass are most preferred though because they do not deteriorate and are not easily broken. More so, practitioners are able to see through the glass and watch the effects on the skin while the treatment is ongoing.
Chinese Cupping – How?
Basically, the Chinese Cupping session starts with the cups being warmed with the use of a flammable substance, such as cotton. This is soaked in alcohol and burned inside the cup. In a split of a second, the burned cotton is taken out of the cup, and the cup is placed upside down over the specific area of skin of the person undergoing the treatment. The vacuum created by the burning that took place inside the cup results to the anchoring of the cup to the skin, which is pulled inside the glass while the air in it starts to cool. In some cases, herbal oils are initially applied to the skin to facilitate the cup’s movement across different acupoints. The cups are left in place over the skin for five to ten minutes depending on the condition targeted.
A variation of the traditional Chinese Cupping, which is also referred to as dry cupping, some also practice air cupping. In this type of cupping, a suction pump is utilized for creating the vacuum. Another difference lies in the puncturing of the skin prior to the treatment itself. Blood is expected to flow out through the puncture site during the treatment, and this is believed to carry the harmful toxins out of the body.
Chinese Cupping – Treatments
Various conditions are treated by the Chinese cupping method. Respiratory problems like asthma, bronchitis and congestion are just a few of the ailments commonly managed with the aid of cupping. People are also alleviated from arthritis, body pains, gastrointestinal disorders and swelling with the aid of this procedure. It can also be used for dealing with depression.
Chinese cupping is really safe, especially the methods that do not involve fire and heat. Although someone who is under this treatment for the first time might get alarmed with the bruises and slight swelling of the skin where the cup is applied, these are actually painless. In fact, they easily disappear in a couple of days after the whole treatment is done.
Chinese Cupping – Summary
The whole procedure seems really easy. Not everyone should do it though. It takes training and a good amount of experience to be effective at this procedure. More so, practitioners should take note of certain conditions in the patients, which might keep them from proceeding with the entire treatment.
The next in our continuing series of articles is a look at the medicinal applications for Chinese Green Tea.