BeWell Health Clinic

What is Cupping Therapy and What are its Benefits?

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Cupping therapy is a Chinese medical technique that treats various medical conditions by applying specialized cups on certain points present on the human body, each corresponding to a particular organ or organ system.


There are 361 points on the body connected with various physiological systems. Each of these points is associated with a particular metabolic and physiological function of the human body.

Cupping helps the body rebalance its energy flow, clearing imbalances caused by stress, pain, poor posture, and other lifestyle influences. This in turn affects and benefits both physical and physiological systems in the body.

Cupping therapy provides a healthy and completely unconventional way to treat various illnesses without the administration of any drugs or medications. It can be used to significantly relieve aches, pains, and inflammation, while feeling just as relaxing as deep tissue massage. 

What is Cupping Therapy and What is the Cupping Process?   

This therapy uses various types of cups applied to the body by creating a vacuum inside to lift up the tissue. The suction created within the cups separates layers of tissue that are stuck together and have become tight and painful. This relieves built up muscle tension and greatly improves blood flow, thereby improving cellular repair and stimulating the formation of new connective tissue.

The cups used in the cupping therapy are made of various substances such as:

  • Silicone

  • Bamboo

  • Earthenware

  • Glass

Cupping Therapy Process:

The main types of cupping therapy are:

  1. Dry cupping

  2. Wet cupping


Dry cupping uses the suction only technique and wet cupping incorporates controlled medicinal bleeding (rarely used in North America). The cupping process includes the following steps:

  1. The practitioner applies cups to the body by creating a vacuum inside the cup with either a pump, a twist up mechanism, or heat.

  2.  The negative pressure inside the cup lifts up the tissue (like the opposite of a massage), dilating blood vessels and releasing tension.

  3. Cups can be left on the body anywhere from 1-10 minutes depending on the treatment goals of the patient and assessment of the practitioner.

In the case of wet cupping, a small cut can be made with an acupuncture needle or scalpel either before the cup has been applied or after it has been removed to cause small, controlled medical bleeding.

Cupping is also sometimes accompanied   combined with acupuncture by inserting an acupuncture needle into the body, then placing a cup directly over the same area (without actually coming into contact with the needle).

Benefits of Cupping Therapy

Cupping therapy is beneficial in treating conditions like back pain, headaches or migraines, muscle pains, stiffness, neck and shoulder pain, knee pain, and sports injuries.

In more traditional Chinese medicine terms, cupping affects the flow of vital energy or “chi” and adjusts any imbalances arise due to illness and injuries. Some of the other benefits that can be gained with this time-tested therapy in a very short period of time.

  • Enhance blood flow

  • Empowers immunity by increasing lymphatic output

  • Reduced inflammation

  • Calms down the nervous system

  • Stretches muscles and connective tissue

  • Loosens up restrictions and adhesions in the tissue

  • General relaxation

  • Optimizes athletic performance

  • Maintains overall health and wellbeing 



Cupping Therapy FAQs


Does Cupping Therapy Work?

Cupping therapy can significantly reduce the symptoms of many health disorders, especially muscle and joint stiffness, many types of pain, and chronic discomforts that have been lingering in the body. In the terminology of Chinese medicine, cupping removes stagnation, facilitates the flow of energy through the meridians, clears heat, removes toxins, and eases pain.

Is Cupping Good for Weight Loss?

Short answer: No.

Cupping can help resolve energy blockages in the body that inhibit the functioning of the internal organs and indirectly affect weight. Whether the body gains or loses weight is much more a factor of eating habits, sleep, overworking, and other mental/emotional stress. Cupping can be part of weight loss treatment in combination with addressing all of these other factors simultaneously. 

Does Cupping Therapy Make you Tired?

Cupping therapy can be a very relaxing experience but every person is different. Many people feel calm, relaxed, or energized after treatment. However, because cupping can be strongly moving and stimulating some people do feel tired after a treatment. This is a sign that the body needs time to rest and recuperate to maximize the treatment effect. Have something to eat afterward, drink plenty of water for the next few days, and go to bed a little earlier. It is also common to have a superficial soreness from cupping. This will go away after about 24 hours or a good night’s sleep.  

Is Cupping Therapy Painful?

Most people do not experience pain, although sensations of pulling or slight discomfort are common briefly after the cups are applied. The best description that most people give is that “it just feels weird”. The suction strength of the cups can be adjusted to the comfort level of each person.

Does Cupping Therapy Result in Bruises?

Many people are concerned about the marks left on the skin after a cupping session thinking that they’re bruises. The coloured marks are the shape of the cups and vary from very light pink or red to a dark red or purple colour. The skin may be somewhat tender immediately after treatment, but the marks themselves are not painful.

The more unhealthy the tissue or the poorer the circulation, the darker the mark is likely to be. The colour can also vary depending on the strength and duration of the treatment. These cupping marks are a normal reaction to cupping and will fade completely in 7-10 days. 

Cupping therapy can be a great alternative to conventional medical approaches for a variety of health issues. If you have a stubborn health problem, cupping might be just the thing you need. 

Are you looking to experience a cupping therapy session in Toronto? We at BeWell clinic provide cupping therapy services. Call us at 647-715-3900 or book online here.

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Still have some questions before you book? Or need to book a medical appointment? Please fill out the form below and one of our administrators will contact you within 24 hours.