Cupping is medical practice where cups are place on parts of the body to create suction effect which raises the skin and draws blood to the surface. It is used throughout Asia, the Middle East, and Europe to treat pain, swelling inflammation, migraine, bronchitis, and the common cold.
The earliest known use of cupping therapy is found in Egypt about 5,000 BC. In China goes back to 3,000 BC. The prophet Mohammad recommended the practice in the Koran 1400 years ago. In Scandinavia and Russia, this was practicing since the 15th century.
The procedure involves using glass or ceramic cups, metal bells, bamboo tubes, animal horn. Recently, however, the use of glass jars, plastic, and silicone are becoming more popular.
Cotton is soaked in alcohol and ignited. This is then put inside the jar to heat it, lowering its internal pressure. The cup is immediately placed on the skin, and as the air inside cools, it creates a vacuum effect which makes it stick to the skin.
Blood immediately rushes to the area, creating a painless bruises which actually feels good. It is like massage in reverse. Instead of pressure bearing down against the skin, it feels like the skin is being pushed outward, instead.
Different coloration of bruises indicates type of health problems, level of toxicity in body and blood stagnation.
There are two types of cupping: wet and dry.