7 Health Benefits of Cupping Therapy
Cupping therapy, also known as Hijama therapy in some Arabic cultures, is a fascinating alternative form of medicine that can be dated from about 5,000 years ago. It has many health benefits, without side effects like that of taking pharmaceutical pills. Learn more about how cupping therapy works and the benefits of this form of therapy. – Benefits of Cupping Therapy
How Cupping Therapy Works
The basic idea behind cupping therapy is to place cups on the patient’s skin to create a vacuum to form negative pressure, which draws blood to the surface of the skin in specific parts of the body that needs healing. In Chinese medicine, cups are used on specific acupuncture points or used along different meridians. Acupuncture is penetrative to the skin, whereas cupping therapy focuses on the skin’s surface. – Benefits of Cupping Therapy
The negative pressure of cupping can squeeze out a large number of air bubbles which reinforces gas exchange in the local tissues. It can open pores to promote the detoxification process and the function of white blood cells which increase the immunity.
The marks that appear on the surface of the skin after cupping is “old blood” which is low in oxygen and high in toxic chemicals, instead of newly generated blood.
3 Types of Cups Used for Cupping Therapy
The different cups used are vacuum, glass and silicon. Vacuum cups use a small air pump to pump the air out of the cups to cause suction. Alternatively, silicon cups are used by squeezing the air out of the cup by hand to create suction. Practitioners use the glass cups by placing a burning cotton ball in the cup to create suction and warmth.
At Bodhi Tree Oriental Health Clinic, we offer both the vacuum (pump) cupping and heat (fire) cupping. Click here to book your cupping therapy treatment.
7 Health Benefits of Cupping Therapy
There are several reasons why a patient may need cupping therapy. The health conditions treated with cupping therapy include back pains, migraines, digestion issues, respiratory infections, skin health, and boosts overall relaxation. More specifically, cupping therapy provides the following health benefits:
- The warm heat from cupping (fire cupping) can expand blood vessels, promote local blood circulations, and improve bloodshot conditions.
- Regulate the nervous system
- Promote metabolism
- Promote immunity (the circulation of lymph fluids in the body)
- Promote normal function of muscle tissues (avoid muscle atrophy)
- Excellent in pain treatment because it moves the blood and energy flow in the body.
- Chinese medicine practitioners usually use cupping at the very beginning of the common cold. In this condition, practitioners use cupping on the upper back to create better circulation, and also opens the pores to let the “wind evil” to disperse from the body. From the western anatomy point of view, 1st to 3rd thoracic nerve affecting heart and lung, cupping the upper back stimulates the nerves which cause healing of the respiratory system.
Cupping increases circulation
The suction from the cups increases circulation to the area where the cups are placed. The additional blood flow to that area can help relieve muscle tension and promote cell repair. Increasing circulation with cupping also helps to reduce the appearance of cellulite.
Cupping encourages tissues to release toxins
Yes, you do have organs that remove toxins from your blood. But the modern lifestyle overloads your body with toxins. Cupping gives your body a boost in releasing those toxins. Focused blood flow helps your body by flushing built-up toxins through the lymphatic system. (Your lymphatic system is responsible for eliminating your body’s toxins and waste.)
Cupping reduces anxiety
When your therapist glides the cups across your skin, your parasympathetic nervous system engages. This promotes deep relaxation to move through your entire body. (Your parasympathetic nervous system is responsible for slowing your heart rate, assisting in digestion, and increasing intestinal and gland activity.)
Cupping can reduce stretch marks and scars
Increased blood flow enables your body to dispose of toxins, restores lymphatic circulation, and helps remove edema (excess fluid), which helps reduce the appearance of scarring. Studies have shown the positive effects of cupping on stretch marks and scars even in areas that are far from the area where the cups are applied.
Cupping can improve varicose veins and spider veins
Varicose veins look like bulging, bluish veins just under your skin, usually on legs and feet. They happen when the valves inside the vein aren’t working properly—the valves don’t effectively push the blood from the muscle back to the heart, so the blood congests and the veins twist and bulge. Cupping helps by bringing fresh blood flow and oxygen back to the problem areas. You’ll notice your varicose veins appear lighter after your first session, though it will take a series of cupping sessions for lasting results. (Note: only dry, not wet, cupping is recommended for treating varicose veins. At Resolution Health, we only practice dry cupping.)
Cupping can clear congestion and help treat asthma
Congestion (the buildup of fluid or phlegm in your lungs) caused by a cold, bronchitis, or even asthma can be treated with cupping. The suction from cups breaks up and expels congestion. It brings oxygen rich blood and lymph toward your lungs and your other respiratory muscles. Cups are usually placed on your back, but may be placed on your chest as well. Your therapist may leave the cups in place, or may gently glide them in an upward motion to facilitate the movement of the lymph fluid. Facial cupping can also be used to help unblock your sinuses.
Cupping can clear colon blockages and aid digestion
Cupping helps to engage the parasympathetic nervous system, which increases blood flow to the digestive tract. Gentle cupping over the abdomen also stimulates the insides of your digestive organs. It aids in peristalsis (contractions that push food through your digestive tract), helps clear colon blockages, encourages blood and body-fluid to move through your organs, and helps relieve indigestion.