Cupping is one of the oldest methods of treatment in traditional Chinese medicine. A vacuum is created within glass cups by means of heat and applied to specific areas being treated. Drawing up the skin and underlying tissue is believed to open up the skin’s pores, creating a way to release toxins, stimulate the flow of blood, and balance the flow of qi.
Possible conditions that cupping may be used to treat include: bronchitis, asthma; arthritis; gastrointestinal disorders; and certain musculoskeletal conditions.
This adjunctive technique may cause some swelling and bruising on the skin where the cups are applied. These bruises are usually painless and disappear within a two-three days of treatment.