How To Use The Old Cupping Method To Get Rid Of Back Pain

KJ Barber
By KJ Barber May 23, 2019 08:37

How To Use The Old Cupping Method To Get Rid Of Back Pain

Do you suffer from back pain and headaches caused by muscle tension? When the body undergoes stress, whether it’s from rigorous activity or a frenetic week at work, our muscles bind up in ‘knots’ and these tight points in our bodies can cause pain. A traditional method to treat sore muscles is massage, but lately, an even older remedy is coming back in vogue.

Cupping is an ancient alternative treatment where you place heated cups on the skin. As the air cools it forms a vacuum inside the cup and creates suction which pulls up the skin. This pulling relieves tension in the underlying muscles. It is also believed to bring impurities in the body closer to the surface so that improved blood circulation can carry them out of your system.

Although cupping is attributed to the Chinese Taoist Ge Hong (281 – 341 A.D.), evidence exists that practitioners used the technique in the Middle East even earlier. Ebers Papyrus is one of the oldest medical textbooks in the world, dating back to 1 550 B.C. . This book describes the Egyptians of the time using cupping as a therapy to treat a variety of disorders.

Cupping Can Relieve Pain and Common Ailments

In 2015, an article in the Journal of Traditional and Complimentary Medicine said that you could use cupping for pain management and to treat the symptoms of acne, facial paralysis, herpes zoster, and cervical spondylosis. Cervical spondylosis is better known as age-related wear and tear of the spinal discs in your neck, and it is commonplace among older people.

Cupping is useful for relieving tension and pain in overworked muscles and improving your range of motion. When you use cupping in conjunction with conventional medicine, it can help you to recover from an injury sooner and cut back the need for anti-inflammatories. Most people who try cupping say that their musculoskeletal pain reduces immediately, and the benefits of cupping continue even after the treatment ends.

Improved blood circulation from cupping means that your organs can also benefit from the treatment, alleviating the symptoms of deep-seated conditions. In Chinese medicine, cupping is used to treat congestion of the lungs and digestive disorders.

It is widely believed that cupping draws toxins out of the blood and that it is beneficial to people who suffer from chronic illnesses such as asthma, diabetes, and high blood pressure.

You Can Experience the Benefits at Home

Athletes go to a therapist for cupping, but you can safely try it at home. In fact, long before the stars jumped on the bandwagon, our grandparents were using cupping as a home remedy.

You will need a few simple tools and a basic understanding of the technique to use cupping as an affordable alternative treatment so you can lessen the need for pain medication and live a healthier life.

Related: 7 Medicines You Should Know How To Make At Home

What Tools Do You Need?

Cupping is an inexpensive treatment; as the name suggests, you will only need a few cups, and you can use them repeatedly. You can use cups made from a variety of materials such as glass, earthenware, bamboo, or silicone but they must have a smooth rim to make sure that they can create suction, and it’s preferable to use cups that are easy to sterilize.

Cups are usually bell-shaped or round. There is no set number of cups for a cupping treatment; you can use any amount from one up, but three to seven cups are common, and you can use as many as you need for the area you want to nurse. When you do cupping for the first time, it is best to start with only a few cups and check your body’s reaction.

How Does a Cupping Treatment Work?

Traditionally, you would light combustible material in the cup to heat the air, then quickly invert the cup over the treatment area and allow the cooling air inside to create a vacuum. These days, you can buy a glass or silicone cupping set with a suction device attached. If you use a commercial cupping set, you simply place the cup where you want to attach it and draw the air out of the cup.How To Use The Old Cupping Method To Get Rid Of Back PainWhether you use heated air or a pump to attach the cups, the suction draws your skin and the underlying fascia up into the cup, forming a bulge. Common areas to attach the cups include the back, neck, and abdomen.

Once the cups have attached to your skin, you can leave them in place for three to fifteen minutes, or gently move them over your body, taking care not to disrupt the suction seal. The force from the vacuum in the cups is not painful.How To Use The Old Cupping Method To Get Rid Of Back PainWhen your body becomes used to the initial sensation of pressure, you will feel the tension in your muscles releasing as the tissue is lifted and loosened up by the suction in the cup. When you are ready to remove them, simply slip a finger under the rim of the cup to release the vacuum.

You can repeat the cupping treatment as often as you like, but for best results, practitioners recommend that you keep to a routine and do it once a week.

Related: How to Make the Most Powerful Natural Antibiotic

What are the Side Effects of Cupping?

Directly after you remove the cups, there will be telltale red, discolored circles on your skin. They will mostly disappear within a few hours, but bruises that last up to ten days are not uncommon. Other side effects can include skin infection, mild irritation of the treatment area, and burns from overheated cups.

To avoid a skin complaint, always sterilize your cups before using them. If you are using the heat method, check the temperature before you apply the cups to your skin.

You should never apply cups to inflamed skin, areas with sunburn, or open wounds. Cupping is not recommended for people who have hemophilia or take blood thinning medication.

Health practitioners and researchers are rediscovering the benefits of traditional treatments all the time. As a non-invasive alternative treatment, cupping is safe to try at home for pain relief, to help your muscles to relax, and to treat a variety of ailments to help you live a healthier life.

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KJ Barber
By KJ Barber May 23, 2019 08:37
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  1. Weiss May 23, 10:28

    You do Realize that aside from facilitating circulation in the area where the cups are, anything else is pseudoscience

    Talk to an actual doctor about this.

    Reply to this comment
    • steve May 23, 15:05

      yeh, circulation…what a concept. bet your doctor will be in favor of circulation. but maybe not as much as he is in favor of drugs.

      Reply to this comment
      • Weiss May 23, 17:05

        I was talking about asking the doctor about the rest of the pseudoscience cupping claims to treat.

        Reply to this comment
        • magicman254 August 9, 03:32

          If you talk with your doctor, he/she will have no idea how this works and will only consider it voodoo. Your doctor will discourage this but I know it works. My grandmother used it to relieve severe congestion one day when my grandfather came home from work (back in the 1930’s). The congestion made it hard to breathe. The method worked.

          Reply to this comment
    • young prepper May 23, 17:35

      well improving circulation relieves pain,and just because someone has a degree doesnt mean they know their ass from a hole in the ground,one of my friends is an amazing doctor,she deals with herbal medicine and can do anything that isnt a surgery

      Reply to this comment
      • Weiss May 23, 19:29

        Congratulations for her? If you aren’t trained in a field, you have no business offering advice in said field. I wouldn’t dare give advice about astrophysics nor neuro surgery.

        Reply to this comment
        • Clergylady May 23, 20:17

          I’d leave astrophysics and neurosurgery alone too. But I’d hand you a cup of willow bark tea or an aspirin if you had a headache.

          Reply to this comment
    • CvB May 25, 04:15

      Weiss, So check this out, back in the early 1900’s one of the Rockefeller’s went to major hospitals and offered them money if they would allow him to fill seats on their board of directors. These people slowly pushed out the herbal doctors in favor of the doctors who would use “modern” pharmaceuticals. Seems that once again the “love of money” won. I only say this because it’s the first thing that occured to me when you started throwing rocks at a practice that has been helping people for hundreds of years. I’m sure your freezer is full though.

      Reply to this comment
  2. Pappy May 23, 17:00

    Why are the supposedly “open minded” the most “closed minded” if something doesn’t fit their narrative?
    Aren’t drugs man’s attempt to clone nature for profit, whilst condemning the vary cure they cloned?

    Reply to this comment
  3. left coast chuck May 23, 17:18

    If you are taking blood thinners, I bet you get an impressive bruise at each cup site. If you are taking blood thinners, it might be well to check with your doctor before you start a course of cupping.

    Reply to this comment
    • Carla May 25, 16:45

      I’ll never adviser anyone to *not* check with their doctor first, BUT! My husband is on blood thinners, due to stents, so bigger doses. We use an integrated health plan of our own building(all the caregivers know everything). His back got messed up, when was rear – ended by a semi, 20-odd years ago, and sometimes, cupping is the only thing that gives him any real relief, for his back pain.
      I’ve had some wicked damage done to my shoulders, and though I’m not on blood thinners, and take only herbs for my fibro, lupus, EDS, and OA, cupping has often helped my shoulder pain. It’s great for muscle strains, too.

      Reply to this comment
  4. Ken May 23, 18:22

    I’ve had cupping done it does work. And you sleep like a baby afterwards. It did help my pain.

    Reply to this comment
  5. Clergylady May 23, 20:12

    An interesting aside… My neighbor did this on my healing but aching broken arm years ago. Have to admit I was a skeptic. It relieved the pain for a while. Circulation can’t hurt as long as your healthy. Still not so sure I’d want this done on my back…
    Maybe once to experiment.
    Then decide.
    I know a good massage sure helps.

    Reply to this comment
  6. left coast chuck May 24, 00:18

    Any time someone recommends any kind of remedy, whether it is folk medicine, ancient Chinese herbal medicine tested by centuries, modern chemical medicine, we should always bear in mind the proven placebo effect is 30%.

    What that means is that for every 100 patients where a medicine man in a ferocious mask with flute, drums, rattles and a hypnotizing dance will have 30 of those patients actually feel some improvement, albeit however fleeting.

    That’s why before any drug hits the market in the U.S., it must undergo several double blind tests. That is where not only do the patients not know whether they are getting a sugar pill placebo or the real deal, but the medical personnel administering the pill or shot or whatever do not know whether it is the sugar placebo or the real deal. Then, only results over 30% are considered actual results. So out of 100 patients in the double blind test if 45 show symptoms of improvement, that means that the drug has a 15% cure rate.

    Remember, we are talking about demonstrable results, not “Yeah, I feel much better results.” The cancer cells demonstrated reduced size. The amygdala demonstrated that it was no longer inflamed, etc.

    We all search for the magic bean. No one wants to take pills for the rest of their life all the while feeling crummy. All of us want that magic bean that will restore us to our youth. Ponce de Leon didn’t find it because it really doesn’t exist.

    IF a day or even an hour of relief from pain is worth what it cost you to get that hour or day of relief, why then, go for it but don’t delude yourself into thinking you have found the magic bean.

    I used to follow the practical medical advice of an M.D. who called himself Dr. Gott. I don’t know if that was his real name, but it was the name he used for his daily newspaper column. His philosophy toward homeopathic medicine and folk remedies I thought was well considered and sound. He had several criteria: 1, it had to be inexpensive. 2. it had to cause no additional harm, 3. it couldn’t replace proven medical treatment. In the words, no magical incantations for a compound comminuted fracture of the leg. Get yourself to an orthopedic surgeon for an open reduction of the fracture. If you have a metastasizing brain tumor, drinking prune juice with apple cider three times a day isn’t going to help. Coffee enemas are not going to cure your pancreatic cancer. Cupping may relieve the pain of a ruptured disc but it isn’t going to make the disc unruptured (Predictive changed “unruptured” to “enraptured.” A very interesting change.)

    Cupping may relieve the pain of a badly broken arm and the pain relief may help the arm heal a smidge faster, but nature is going to heal that break — or not. Cupping is not going to make a break that won’t heal magically heal. A break that won’t heal is a long, frustrating, painful condition that baffles doctors. My sister-in-law has an anomalous condition that turns her lower leg bones into material that the orthopedic surgeon described as smelling foul and looking like cottage cheese. In addition to consulting orthopedists in her home town she has consulted with orthopedic specialists at both USC and UCLA all to no avail. It took over six months for the surgical site to heal even with hyperbaric treatments.

    Some of us just get weird conditions that are so unusual that doctors just don’t know what to do about it. If you have unlimited funds you can spend a fortune consulting with one specialist after another all to no avail. Perhaps you will get lucky and find someone who has treated a similar condition successfully — or not.

    I hope Alex Trebec is not using cupping to treat his pancreatic cancer — or coffee enemas either.

    Reply to this comment
    • left coast chuck May 24, 00:28

      I am reminded of a cartoon from a cartoonist named Gahan who used to draw for Playboy Magazine (I subscribed for the articles). In the cartoon a frog dressed in standard business attire with coat and tie is sitting in a doctor’s office and the doctor is saying, “Most unfortunate reaction to penicillin I have ever seen.”

      Or the other one I like: Patient presents with a long list of bizarre, baffling symptoms. The doctor pours through texts in his library, searches through various websites on his office computer and still can’t figure out just what is afflicting the patient. As an aside he casually asks the patient if he has ever had these symptoms before. The patient responds, “Yes, three previous times.” “Well,” the doctor says with a relieved expression, “You’ve got it again.”

      Spring that on the doc the next time he is scratching his head while you are sitting on the exam table.

      Reply to this comment
  7. jelli May 24, 22:28

    I’ve started using cupping because it worked when my massage therapist did it. Bought cheep online silicone cups set of two, small and smaller. Love it. I use them on my hips as well as my back. You know those deep knots in the hip and the tight IT band? It hurts for a few seconds but just go with it as it eases up in less than a minute. I have gotten a couple hickys before but I was pumping the cups.

    Reply to this comment
  8. IvyMike May 25, 00:22

    My Doc is a D.O., but she is also a Dr. of Traditional Chinese Medicine, and that is her practice. I go to her for acupuncture, the only medical treatment I get unless I need sewing up or a fracture reduced. She cupped me once, in my case I perceived no benefit from it and told her to get back to acupuncture with me.
    All of these ancient treatments approach health from a completely different place than American medicine, and everybody reacts according to their own understanding.
    But I have to say, I tweaked my sacro-iliac joint out in the garden the other day and did not go for acupuncture and cupping, instead I went for cheap white Tequila and my little squeeze bottle of Aspercreme with 4% Lidocaine. A thousand thanks to the Nanny State for letting us have 4% Lidocaine…
    It occurs to me, no one ever promised me a life without pain.

    Reply to this comment
  9. Aferalcat June 10, 19:39

    Watching the Cincinnati Reds on tv, the cameraman zoomed in on the red circles on the pitcher’s throwing arm and the announcer stated that the trainers were treating sore arms with cupping.

    Reply to this comment
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