What is Cupping?
Cupping is a traditional Chinese Medicine practice used to increase blood circulation and stimulate the flow of energy.
How does it work?
The cupping treatment process is carried out by heating up glass cups and placing them on the skin. The cups are placed along the meridians in the body, which function like an energy highway. Life energy, or Qi, flows along these meridians to help maintain balance within the body.
Sometimes this energy highway can experience blockages for various reasons. These blockages can lead to pain, respiratory issues, and other health concerns.
Cupping is a form of treatment to help alleviate these obstructions. A cup is heated, and then placed on the skin creating a vacuum. This serves to elevate blood flow, relax muscles and connective tissue, and generate healing.
Types of Cupping
There are many different variations of cupping available, depending on the results you are looking for. Three of the main traditional methods are:
- Dry Cupping
- Wet Cupping
- Massage Cupping
This method involves the heating of a vessel and placing it on the skin. As the air inside the cup begins to cool, the skin will be drawn up into the cup. The cup should be left on for about three minutes, producing a reddened area on the skin.
Even though this approach leaves what appears to be bruising on the skin, it is not painful. Patients report feelings of relaxation after a treatment.
A similar procedure is applied to wet cupping. Heat will be used to create a vacuum inside the cup, drawing up the skin. The vessel will be a left in place for about the same amount of time, three minutes.
Now, the difference between dry cupping and wet cupping lies in the next step. Once the cups are removed after a wet cupping treatment, small incisions will be made on the skin to the areas that have been treated. The cuts will be minimal and sanitary, usually done with a scalpel or needle. This encourages a little blood to flow from each area.
The cupping process is then reapplied to the same areas to draw out stagnant blood, remove heat and toxins, and to relieve pain.
With massage cupping, comparable tools and methods are administered, but with a slight alteration. The cups will be moved across the skin to apply pressure to the muscles. The area that is set to be targeting will be lubricated with oils to allow the cup to move freely on the skin.
Massage cupping tends to use silicone cups rather than glass to allow for more pliability. This method is used for easing tension, stress, and pain.
Benefits of Cupping for Fertility
Cupping can be an effective method for treating infertility, especially when used in conjunction with acupuncture treatments.
Cupping and acupuncture can help:
- Reduce stress
- Restore hormonal balance
- Relax muscle tension
- Induce ovulation
- Regulate menstruation
- Improve sperm quality
- Increase probability of IVF success
As you can see, there are numerous advantages to using cupping as a fertility treatment, as well as to improve overall health.
Cupping is becoming a more popular treatment for people from all walks of life. You may notice celebrities and famous athletes with red circular marks on their skin from cupping treatments. A lot of athletes are using it for muscle recovery, and to promote better energy flow.