Cupping is a traditional Chinese medicine (now often called Oriental Medicine) treatment that originated thousands of years ago in Asia. It is a holistic medical procedure which is part of alternative medicine.
Placing pneumatic plastic cups to specific areas of the body is very effective and potent in relieving the following symptoms and illnesses:
• Respiratory conditions such as bronchitis
• COPD or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
• Phlegm buildup in the lungs
• Joint and muscle pains in the shoulders, extremities, neck, and back
The following is a story of a man who discovered the incredible benefits of cupping therapy in his life and how it helped him overcome a severe coughing illness.
Several years ago, I caught a really bad cold that resulted in an uncontrollable cough, the kind that sounds like a dog bark. This is the type of cough that whatever you do, it just doesn’t seem to quit.
This cough was caused by phlegm accumulation in his lungs. When it starts, it’s totally out of control. Some of my coughing spells can last for a minute and some for an hour or even more and eventually I fall out of sheer exhaustion as the coughing never seems to end.
My problem has also social ramifications. During class, when my coughing spells begin, I had to leave the class to avoid disrupting the teacher. It really affected my social life and I started being avoided by people and friends.
I was annoying people, in terrible discomfort, and sick, and fear that my sickness will spread to others. I missed a lot of classes and felt completely miserable.
The medications my doctor prescribed did not work. So I decided to do some research on natural healing techniques. I found a book about cupping therapy and read it.
For me, the book and the cupping technique was quite sensible and so I decided to give this therapy a try since nothing else seems to work for me anyway. I was intrigued about how the use of plastic or even bamboo cups, fire, and rubbing someone’s back with oil can resolve a seemingly incurable problem as my cough.
Fortunately, I found a healer who often used cupping in her treatments. She asked me if anyone has performed cupping on my back to help me get rid of my cough. I answered, no and she replied “Then, I can do some cupping on your body right now in my clinic if you are available?” So I said, “Sure, why not”.
My First Cupping Experience
My healer instructed me take off my shirt and to lie on the table face down. She then massaged my back with Tiger Balm partly to help me breathe easier and partly to lubricate my back.
She took out the healing cups, applied them on my back, pumped air out of each cup and started sliding them in an upward and downward motion over the big muscles on the sides of my spine over the lungs.
I felt pleasantly relaxed and so good. This was the first time in my life I experienced such an overwhelming sense of calmness and relaxation.
My healer performed this for around 20 minutes, moving the cups up and down intermittently. Later on, she said, “Well, that’s it. Inform me how you feel later on in case we need to repeat the treatment.” I rose from the table with my back feeling really good, although I could still feel some congestion. Before leaving, I told her “I’ll let you know,” thanked her, and left.
What Happened Next
The next morning when I woke up, I felt 50 percent better! Incredibly, the day after, I felt even better perhaps, another 50% better, and that is no exaggeration. I talked to my healer and she recommended two more sessions. After those sessions, my cough completely disappeared and all the other symptoms vanished. I took no medicine and no herbs during all the treatments.
How Does Cupping Work?
The idea behind Cupping is that it helps increase the flow of blood and energy into the affected regions of the body which promotes healing and alleviates pain.
Moreover, there are pressure points located on each side of the spine and up and down on it. Placing cups and sliding them on the points stimulates these points. Stimulating the pressure points with cupping, needling, rubbing, or pressing boosts the circulation of energy towards the organs related to each of these points.
Cupping was able to stimulate the man’s lungs and his other internal major organs. The lungs, however, are the most important organs that require stimulation in order for the phlegm to be expelled out of the body.
Coughing is a natural and essential body function. It is non-productive and wrong to suppress coughing. Abundant mucus or phlegm in the lungs can set of coughing spells in order to expel the mucus and phlegm out of the body.
When a buildup of mucus and phlegm occurs in the lungs, they generate an environment conducive for the thriving of bacteria. Few people are aware that a lot of the potentially dangerous bacteria reside in our nasal passages, lungs and in practically every orifice of our body.
The Role of the Immune System in Preventing the Outgrowth of Bacteria
A strong immune system assures the person that the harmful microorganisms in the body are kept in check. The overall health of your body is best measured by your body’s overall strength. In general, the strength of your immune system is measured by the level of energy that you have.
Points to Remember If You Decide to Try Cupping Therapy
1. When you receive cupping treatment, there may be some bruising in the areas treated when your body has significant stagnation of blood and Qi in the affected areas. This is okay as it is part of the treatment and will disappear within a few or more days, just like any other bruise.
2. If you plan to wear clothes that would expose the areas treated, or plan to go to the beach, you should take into consideration that the bruises may be seen by other people.
3. If you plan to dress for an occasion that will occur in less than two weeks and plan to wear clothing that exposes your back and you care about what opinions people have of you, then do not get cupping treatment over the next week and a half.
4. You need to tell your family, spouse, mate, and friends that you plan to undergo cupping therapy lest they worry about the bruises in your body later on. You can tell them that cupping is a healing procedure that causes bruising and they are a natural consequence of the treatment. You also may need to tell them that the therapy will quickly alleviate your pain and facilitate your healing and it is not really a painful process.
Danielle DeVivo is a board certified and licensed acupuncturist in Saratoga Springs, NY.