Pilot study concludes pain-relieving effects of wet cupping therapy

In countries like China, wet cupping therapy (WCT) is a form of traditional alternative medicine that is used to cure different health conditions. According to data from a studywet cupping can also be used to help patients who suffer from pain-related health problems.

Wet cupping’s effectiveness as natural pain relief

For the pilot study, which was published in the journal Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, a team of scientists examined the potential benefits of wet cupping therapy on individuals who suffer from nonspecific neck and upper shoulder pain.

The research team collated data from 61 eligible participants. All of the study participants have had nonspecific neck and upper shoulder pain for at least three months before the study began.

Researchers took note of each participant’s pain scores, which were measured using the Numeric Rating Scale (NRS). The pain scores of all the volunteers were recorded twice: before and after they received wet cupping therapy.

After analyzing the results of the pilot study, the researchers noted that the mean scores of neck pain in the study group were 7.02 before and 3.70 after the wet cupping therapy was administered. The decrease of pain scores between the pre- and post-test results were statistically significant, indicating that WCT can be used to treat patients with neck and shoulder pain.

The researchers posit that while wet cupping therapy can be used to relieve nonspecific neck and upper shoulder pain, future full-scale randomized controlled trials can help experts gather solid proof of WCT’s effectiveness as an alternative remedy.

What is cupping?

Cupping is a type of alternative therapy that was first used in China. During treatment, cupping practitioners place cups on the skin to create suction. It is believed that the suction promotes healing with blood flow, along with the flow of “qi” in the body. Qi is a Chinese word that means “life force.”

The benefits of cupping include:

  • Improving blood circulation in the area where the cups are placed.
  • Promoting the formation of new connective tissues and creating new blood vessels in the tissue.
  • Relieving muscle tension, which can improve overall blood flow and promote cell repair.

Cupping is often used to complement treatment for different health problems. (Related: Alleviate lower back pain naturally with traditional Persian therapies.)

In the past, cupping was performed with animal horns. In time, practitioners started using “cups” made from bamboo. These bamboo cups were then replaced with more modern ceramic cups.

The suction is mostly created through the use of heat. During therapy, the cups were heated with fire and then applied to the skin. Once the cups cooled down, the cups drew the skin inside.

In modern cupping, practitioners use glass cups that are rounded like balls and open on one end. There are two main categories of cupping:

  1. Dry cupping — This is a suction-only method.
  2. Wet cupping — This form of cupping may involve both suction and controlled medicinal bleeding.

A cupping practitioner will help you determine which method is best for your condition based on your medical condition and your preferences.

Cupping is used to treat many conditions, but it is most effective when used to relieve problems linked to muscle aches and pains. Because the cups can also be applied to major acupressure points, cupping can help address digestive issues, skin issues, and other problems that are often treated using acupressure.

You can read more articles about the benefits of wet cupping therapy and other natural remedies at Healing.news.

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