Cupping is a traditional method of treatment used in the West as well as the East. In China, cups are usually made of glass or bamboo. In cupping, a lighted taper is placed into the cup, creating a lower pressure in the cup by burning the oxygen. The cup is then quickly placed onto the patient's skin. The low pressure in the cup forces the skin up and promotes the free flow of Qi and blood in the meridians, warms the area and diminishes pain and swelling in the area. In clinics, cupping is often used to treat:
Along with continual development in clinical practice, the materials for making jars and the methods have been greatly improved. The range of indications has been expanded, since this method is simple and effective.