I love turning nouns into verbs! So ya, in my world, I cup people. It’s fun for me and my patients love it too!!
What is cupping?
Cupping is the application of suction cups to any area of the body on the skin. The cups may be glass with suction created by fire inserted into cup then quickly placed on the body. I use plastic cups and use a handheld device to remove air from inside the cups. Oil is mostly used on the skin and the oil may contain herbs or camphor.
There’s two ways to cup – leave them in one place or slide them around, pulling up the tissue with the suction like an inverse massage. Instead of pressing into muscles, the muscles are gently pulled up, and the amount of suction can be adjusted to comfort.
What does Cupping Do?
Cupping is a deep tissue therapy that breaks up adhesions, promotes blood and lymph circulation, and releases tension in the local tissues. Often joints, muscles, and various connective tissues can accumulate toxins due to tension and lack of circulation. These toxins contribute to pain and discomfort. Because cupping releases blockages, this in turn means it promotes qi circulation. The result is looser tissues allowing waste products to be flushed out and blood and lymph and qi to circulate more freely.
Why Get Cupped?
I will cup patients typically for the following reasons:
- relieving pain or tension in the muscles
- relieving pain or tension in joints
- relieving symptoms of colds
- digestive and metabolic support
- general detoxification support
- as a diagnostic tool
What Are Side Effects and Contraindications?
I don’t cup pregnant women, and I don’t cup those who have bleeding or clotting disorders or on anticoagulant medications.
Most patients will have marks in the shapes of the circular cups for a few days after the cupping session. This is normal and discoloration varies from hardly anything to very dark purplish or red marks.
Cupping is not appropriate for everyone. This is why I create individualized treatment plans. I can do a quick short amount of cupping with acupuncture after, or we can do a whole cupping session to cover more areas and spend more time with it.
Questions? I would love to hear from you. Drop me a line.