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Cupping

Cupping is yet another widely used modality in Chinese medicine.  Where Acupuncture is used to move 'Qi' or function, cupping aims to invigorate blood, provide stimulus to release pathogens, and to break up accumulations.  Classically, a heating element was applied to the inside of instruments made of wood, horn, and later glass.  Heating the inside of the instrument would create a vacuum and when sealed against a patients skin, would create suction.  Chinese medical practitioners often utilize cupping to alleviate chronic pain by breaking up areas of stagnation, stimulating blood flow, and moving the lymphatic system.  Patients often report this as incredibly relaxing.  It should be noted that although cupping maintains a lengthy history of safety and is used across many cultures, it does leave circular bruises which can take up to a week to fade.