Know the Benefits and Side Effects of Cupping Therapy for Back Pain

Updated on November 26th, 2019
Cupping for Back Pain

Cupping for back pain may be trending the charts now, but it is not something new. In fact, one may be amazed to know that this therapy dates back to the ancient Chinese, Egyptian and, Middle Eastern Cultures. Cupping was successfully used to treat and cure back pain.

Cupping for Back Pain

Why Does Cupping Help to Relieve One of the Constant Back-Pain?


Cupping relieves one of the back-pain as pressure is applied to the points that cause pain, and the blood flow begins to increase in the area within the vessels and capillaries(1). This eases the muscles and helps with the supply of nutrients and oxygen that the body needs. The essence of this therapy is the Cupping Points that target the areas of pain accurately and naturally reduce muscle pain.

Cupping works along to release the tension in the tissue of the body and, in doing so it relaxes the sore muscles, eases the neck and the back pain.

Cupping is also known as Hijama or medicinal bleeding. Cupping for Back pain is exactly the opposite of massage. Instead of applying pressure to the different points of the body for healing, cupping used suction to tug the skin, which forces fresh blood to reach the areas of pain and aches. In doing so it also kick-starts the healing process faster.

[Also Read: Relieve Back Pain with Natural Remedies]

Did You Know!

  • Cupping is used to treat migraines and relieves symptoms of fibromyalgia amongst others.
  • Cupping is an extremely safe therapy and creates an effective healing response. It is a part of an overall healing process of an injury, pain or, muscle inflammation.

Does the Therapy Hurt?

There have been no complaints of severe pain during the session of cupping therapy(2). Individuals complain of a slight pinch at first, but it generally subsides during the course of the treatment as the muscles tend to relax. As the treatment progresses, the tissues become less congested over time. Most patients experience improvement in mobility and overall relaxation of the body.

The Purpose of Cupping Therapy

Other than treating back pain, cupping is beneficial in treating a wide variety of ailments. It particularly relaxes the back and alleviates the tension from the spine and the lumbar region of the back. Apart from feeling relaxed, the athletes are using cupping as their secret weapon.

Cupping reduces the stiffness of the muscles.  Reducing inflammation and stiffness of the back helps in releasing the pressure of the back and alleviating the pain.

[Also Read: Yoga for Back Pain]

The Benefits of Cupping for Back Pain

Cupping Therapy

Cupping therapy is a completely safe alternative method to ease the constant nagging back pain. After cupping therapy session, one may feel all the benefits of the therapy. It may not be prominent in the beginning but as the therapy continues one feels rejuvenated with more mobility and ease in movement due to the elimination of the recurring backache.

The benefits of cupping therapy are as follows:

  • Cupping encourages blood flow and sedates the nervous system naturally. (this is also beneficial for individuals suffering from high blood pressure).
  • Cupping helps in the alignment of the back and also relaxes the entire back.
  • Due to improved blood flow, there is also an adequate supply of nutrients and oxygen to the area where it hurts.
  • As the tissues and the cells start relaxing, chronic congestion is eliminated gradually.
  • It softens the tightened muscles.
  • Opening the blockages in the lymphatic nodes and easing the flow of the lymph.
  • The suction causes the drawing of inflammation out from the deeper tissues to the surface of the skin in order to heal in a better way.
  • The therapy also helps in lifting the connecting tissues.
  • Cupping helps in releasing and draining the excess fluids and toxins like lactic acid from the tissues and cells.
  • As the treatment progresses the back eases and results in the loosening of the adhesions and knots.

All the mechanisms occur in a pattern which is inter-related. As the therapy begins, the suction and compression together help in relieving one of their back pain.

[Also Read: Exercises for Immediate Back Pain Relief]

The Side Effects of Cupping Therapy

Though there are no extreme side effects of the therapy, patients have complained about the following after their therapy.

  • Cupping may cause pain, nausea, swelling, fainting, burns, dizziness, sweating, light-headedness and skin pigmentation.
  • It also leaves behind round purple marks or bruises which subside within a few days of therapy.
  • Scars and burns are common in cupping, but nothing dangerous.

Cupping therapy works differently on every individual. The benefits of cupping therapy definitely outweigh the side effects. One should not be skeptical about the side effects as it is a safe therapy and has been beneficial to many individuals. However, the risks of cupping are a lot less than what other alternatives have to offer.

Back pain can be awfully painful and hinder with our day to day activities. If you are amongst the ones who have given up hope on conventional medicine to treat your back pain, then cupping therapy for back pain is apt for you. It is very effective and beneficial in relieving chronic back pain. However, a word of caution, do not try it yourself. Visit an experienced cupping therapist in order to avoid any complications.

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