Types of Cupping

There are three main types of Cupping used today:

Dry cupping

Dry cupping is performed by applying a plastic cup to the surface of the skin and using a pump, air is removed by suction. This method draws blood and fluid away from any inflamed area to the surface of the skin. Cupping should not be performed on areas of skin that have open wounds. Dry cupping can be performed at any time, on any day, and can be left for 10-15 minutes. Numerous cups can be applied at any one time although it is extremely important that the therapist is able to observe the cups whilst they are applied to the skin to avoid any blistering occurring.

 Areas of pain and inflammation greatly benefit from cupping as it relieves congestion and allows blood to flow easier. Dry cupping can be repeated daily and can be self-administered on body parts which are accessible to the patient. Tensions can be made light, medium or strong.


Hijama (Wet Cupping) 

For Wet Cupping, small scratches are made to the surface of the skin with a sterile blade after dry cupping has been performed for 3-5 minutes. The cup is then re-applied to the skin using suction and the pressure difference extracts the blood that has accumulated.

When properly performed by a trained cupping therapist, cupping leaves no marks or scarring.

Hijama is best performed on an empty stomach and so it is advised that you do not eat for a minimum of 2-3 hours before treatment. After treatment, strenuous physical exercise should be restricted for 24 hours. This includes swimming, cycling, running etc. Normal activities should not be affected. You should also avoid showering for 24 hours.

If itching is experienced, oil, (preferably black seed or olive), can be applied to the surface of the skin. This will aid the natural healing of the skin as well as relieve itchiness.

Plastic cups CANNOT be re-used and must be disposed of safely via a clinical waste disposal program.


Moving Cupping

Moving cupping is performed using a generous amount of oil, (black seed, olive, etc), applied to the area to be massaged, (usually the back). The cup is placed onto the skin using a light tension and can then be moved over the skin with a sliding motion, in circular/long movements.

Moving cupping can be performed at any time, on any day and for however long the patient desires. Massage cupping does not require the patient to have an empty stomach. The cup used for moving cupping can be kept for future uses by the same patient.

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