Suction cupping therapy
Cupping therapy works for losing muscle,
improving blood circulation and energy flow. Therefore it is
good for muscle spam, tightness, numbness and cold feeling. In
our clinic, it is used for the treatment of shoulder pain,
tightness, heaviness and bloating feeling, arthritis, common
cold, and so on.
Cupping therapy is used very common in
ordinary Chinese Family from history. It is to apply a suction
cup onto the skin for several minutes. There is a vacuum created
within the cup, which is created by burning a piece of cotton or
paper or by suctioning with a hand-pump. The cup can be made in
portray, clay, bamboo, glass or plastic material.
We usually recommend our clients to have
cupping instrument at home to have some treatment after
acupuncture by themselves. We guide our clients to use it. It is
simple while quite useful. It is especially good for those who
live far away from an acupuncture clinic. This is also very
important for those of our clients who need long term treatment.
The possible side effect of the suction cup
is pain due to the suction and blister on the skin. The pain can
be reduced by lose little air in the cup. For small blister, we
usually leave it to heal naturally without any need for
treatment. If it is bigger, say, as a 1 cm diameter, it is
broken with a sterilized acupuncture needle first, then covered
with a medical tap. It needs several days to heal completely.
The suction therapy is only useful for a
treatment, but also for an assessment of body condition by
looking at the color of the skin after suction. A reddish skin
color suggests that there is “Fire” toxic in the body. A black
color suggests there is “Cold” and/or blood stagnation in the
body. If there is more water moisture or even water blister, it
suggests an accumulation of extra water in the body. For people
with the water, suction therapy could make them much energized
even if there is only very little water moved out of the body.
So, the skin color change is one of the ways for TCM doctor to
make TCM diagnosis.
Recently, people in China also reported to use the
suction cupping therapy repeatedly for cure of very tough clinic
conditions, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, chronic liver
disease, insomnia, chronic arthritis, chronic fatigue, etc. They
apply the suction cup on the same skin spot every day for up to
half year or one year. Each time the suction cup is kept for
more than half hour or more until there are lots of liquid,
which sometimes looks as abscess, in the cup. The liquid is
removed and the skin is left as it is if there is broken of the
skin. It is reported that the skin will heal by itself.
Additional medicine is not needed. The procedure is repeated on
the same spot again and again. Each healing period could last
from one month to two months. One to three healing periods is
commonly needed to completely “clear” the body and to reach the
We normally do not
apply such suction therapy to clients in the