There are many different styles of therapeutic massage, some new and some very ancient. They all involve the manipulation of the soft tissues of the body to prevent and alleviate pain, discomfort, and muscle spasm. Some techniques are quite gentle and are often used for stress relief. Others are more forceful and are used in helping the body heal from serious injury and illness.
In my practice, I often integrate acupuncture, massage therapy, moxibustion, and cupping to treat a wide range of pain conditions. I have been a massage therapist since 2000 years and utilize my training in Deep Tissue, Swedish, Sports and Thai massage to provide immediate relief to pain. I also provide on-going patient education, which typically extends the benefits of my treatment sessions.
Cupping is akin to receiving deep tissue massage, but done more gracefully, and in 5-10 minutes during a single treatment. Cupping is a tremendously helpful technique for pain cases as well as many other conditions. When combined with acupuncture and/or massage, the use of cupping will often cut down the number of treatments required for alleviation of pain by 30-70%. Cupping improves the circulation of blood, bringing toxic blood up and out and new blood in. Cupping helps such issues such as generalized pain, injuries of the back/shoulders/neck, herniated discs, disc degeneration, arthritis, and other conditions such as asthma, colds and flu’s, and insomnia.
Around the same time acupuncture became a component of traditional Chinese medical practices in early northern China thousands of years ago, moxibustion evolved as well. What is moxibustion?
Moxibustion is a process that produces radiant heat that helps to promote circulation, restore balance, eliminate excess moisture in the body, and support Qi by penetrating deeply into the body. This is accomplished by burning an herbal wool created using Mugwort plant leaves, referred to as “moxa.” Moxa is an herb that burns slowly over specific acupuncture points typically located on one of the primary energy pathways or “meridians” of the body, and offers a pleasant smell similar to that of incense. While moxa does not physically touch the body, it is passed using wave-like motions over the skin after being rolled in a cigar-like manner or shaped into a small cone on the tip of a needle. Most patients find moxibustion extremely relaxing and enjoyable.