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What is Cupping Therapy?

If you ask the question 'What is cupping', there is a tendency that more and more people in the Western world can answer it.

Cupping therapy used to be a less-talked-about Chinese medicine therapy compared to acupuncture and acupressure, and it is an alternative therapy that could benefit people suffering from chronic pain.

Cupping is said to help improve circulation, 'open' the lungs, draw toxins out towards the skin�s surface, and to facilitate better breathing. In line with Chinese philosophy, cupping is believed to draw out cold, wind, and dampness from the body.

The Method

Original practitioners of cupping used animal horns, leading to the reference 'horn treatment' in some sources. These horns would be heated briefly and placed directly on a patient�s traditional acupuncture points or source of pain.

Later practitioners use cups, made from bamboo or clay, but the basic technique remains the same. During the 20th century, specially-designed glass cups generally replaced the less reliable bamboo and pottery cups which were being used in the cupping treatment.

Side Effects

It is not uncommon to leave large circular bruises after having cupping treatment. At first glance, the bruises look like large love bites or patches smokers use to wean themselves off nicotine.

Cupping can be effective for a wide range of ailments and for reducing pain. It also works best when used together with acupuncture and Chinese herbs.

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