Cupping is trendy right now after the 2016 Summer Olympics, but it’s not new. Cupping is an alternative therapy that has been popular in China since around 1000 BC. One of the biggest advantages to trying alternative practices like cupping therapy, acupuncture or massage therapy is that these methods don’t pose the risk for unwanted side effects like pharmacological drugs or surgery. People use cupping to help with pain, inflammation, blood flow, and relaxation.
Cups that are used may be made of glass, silicone, earthenware or bamboo. The cups are used to create a vacuum and cause your skin to rise and redden as your blood vessels expand. Some patients experience bruising as a result, however most skin returns to normal in about 10 days.