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Cupping is one of the oldest methods of Traditional Chinese Medicine. The cups
can be made of a variety of materials, including glass, bamboo and earthenware
and they are applied to the skin. The pressure in the cup gets reduced by using either a change in heat or by suctioning out air, so that the skin and superficial muscle layers are drawn into and held in the cup.
By drawing up the skin the skin pores open, which helps to stimulate the flow of blood, balances and realigns the flow of energy, breaks up obstructions, and creates an avenue for toxins to be drawn out of the body. Depending on the condition being treated, the cups will be left in place between 5-15 minutes. Cupping is primarily used to treat respiratory conditions such as bronchitis and asthma. It also treats congestion, arthritis, gastrointestinal disorders, and certain types of musculoskeletal pains.