Cupping is part of Oriental medicine; one that can provide an especially pleasant experience. It is the term applied to a technique that uses small cups as suction devices that are placed on the skin. Once the suction has occurred, the cups are either left for a time or can be gently moved across the skin (often referred to as "gliding cupping).
The suction in the cups causes the skin and superficial muscle layer to be lightly drawn into the cup. For most patients, this is a particularly relaxing and relieving sensation. Once suctioned, the cups are generally left in place for about ten minutes while the patient relaxes. The suction and negative pressure provided by cupping can loosen muscles, encourage blood flow, and sedate the nervous system.
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