The Science Behind Cupping Therapy: Exploring its Efficacy in Pain Relief

Woman Lying On Front Receiving Cupping Treatment On Back

While cupping therapy dates back to the days of antiquity, it’s only recently that the procedure has been seen a resurgence in popularity. Mainly due to the changing perception of people towards alternative medicine. These days, certified physiotherapists in Dubai recommend patients to take up this short and harmless procedure to flush out toxins and soothe pain.

So, what is Cupping Therapy?

You might have noticed a lot of celebrities and sportsmen appear to have small round shaped circles on their backs. They are an outcome of cupping therapy. The treatment involves placing cups on the skin to create a gentle suction effect – increasing the flow of blood to strengthen the body’s immunity system, creating harmony in the body by balancing the positive and negative forces, uplifting the overall wellbeing, among other benefits.

Such is the popularity of this procedure that some of the most searched terms online among expats in Dubai are alternative medicines, cupping Dubai, cupping therapy Dubai, and Chinese medicine, to name a few.

Is it a Safe Treatment to Undergo?

We have adequate scientific research and peer reviewed papers to prove that cupping has a plethora of benefits on our bodies. A study conducted in 2008 illustrated how cupping therapy offers relief against a host of conditions that are classified as either localized or systemic.

Another study in 2019 concluded that the positive effects of cupping therapy range from altering pain signal processing and enhancing immunity, to stimulating the flow of lymph in the lymphatic system and decreasing the levels of HDL and LDL cholesterol.

So, all research points to the fact cupping therapy is entirely safe – as the risks vastly outweigh the benefits. Besides, we do not know of any case where someone suffered from serious side-effects or possible injuries from the procedure.

The Different types of Cupping

In the past, cupping was carried out using exotic apparatuses, such as animal horns, bamboo, etc. They almost had this ritualistic quality about them. In the present, it is usually performed using bell-shaped glass cups.

Modern day cupping can be categorized into the following:

  • Dry cupping
  • Wet/bleeding cupping
  • Running cupping
  • Flash cupping

As the most common type, dry cupping involves the suction-only method. The wet/bleeding method sees both suction and controlled medicinal bleeding. The running way of cupping involves moving suction cups around the body after the application of oil on the desired area. While flash cupping is marked by fast and repeated suction and release of cups on specific areas.

The cupping expert will usually place the cups on and around your back, chest, abdomen, buttocks and legs.

How does the Procedure Work?

The cupping specialist will first prepare the cup, which involves fire-heating it with herbs and other medicines. The heated cup’s opening is then placed on your body to create a vacuum effect that sucks your skin into the cup. Despite being painless, your skin at this point will turn red as the blood vessels react to the change in pressure.

Depending upon the type of cupping therapy you opt for, a session generally lasts somewhere between 10-15 minutes.

What does Cupping Therapy Help with?

The therapy is proven to be efficacious to treat a range of conditions; especially those that create muscle and joint discomfort. At a glance, you can expect mild relief from the following ailments:

  • Lower back pain
  • Neck and shoulder pain
  • Headache and migraine
  • Knee joint pain
  • Shingles
  • Facial paralysis
  • Persistent cough
  • Acne
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Possible Side Effects

While there are no major side effects to report, cupping therapy can lead to minor discomfort immediately after the procedure is done. These may include:

  • Circular marks where the cups have been placed
  • Discoloration
  • Dizziness

During or after the therapy, you might also feel light-headed or nausea, which is normal, since it affects the flow of blood in your body.

So, should you go for Cupping Therapy?

If you’re someone seeking a non-invasive way of alleviating pain with hardly any noticeable side effects, then cupping therapy is your best bet. This therapy has remarkable outcomes, most of which we discussed in this article. The best part is, results start showing shortly after the procedure. With that said, it’s advisable to still consult an expert who can assess your family medical history, current health condition, and any underlying condition to ensure that you’re suitable for the therapy and can avoid any potential risks associated with it.

Disclaimer: This article contains sponsored marketing content. It is intended for promotional purposes and should not be considered as an endorsement or recommendation by our website. Readers are encouraged to conduct their own research and exercise their own judgment before making any decisions based on the information provided in this article.

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