Welcome to IMB Acupuncture Blogger!

I have been served Greater Los Angeles community since 2003 as a Licensed Acupuncturist. I hope that this infomative blogger can help people with pain from simple strain to complicated herniated disk and Frozen Shoulder. While I've been in this pain specialized field for more than 10 years, I have helped thousands of people to pain free. David B Chung LAc.

IMB Acupuncture
698 S. Vermont Ave #210
Los Angeles, CA 90005


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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

scraping sha-bruises (Gua Sha Therapy)

Gua sha (Chinese: 刮痧; pinyin: guā shā), meaning "scraping sha-bruises", is a traditional Chinese medical treatment in which the skin is scraped to produce light bruising. Practitioners believe gua sha releases unhealthy elements from injured areas and stimulates blood flow and healing. Gua sha is sometimes referred to as "spooning" or "coining" by English speakers.

When is Gua sha used?

Gua sha is used whenever a patient has pain in any acute or chronic disorder. There may be aching, tenderness and/or a knotty feeling in the muscles. Palpation reveals sha when normal finger pressure on a patient's skin causes blanching that is slow to fade. In addition to resolving musculo skeletal pain, Gua Sha is used to treat as well as prevent common cold, flu, bronchitis, asthma, as well as any chronic disorder involving pain or inflammation.

Where is Gua sha applied?

Gua sha can be done almost anywhere on the body but is typically applied at the back, neck, shoulders, chest, abdomen, buttocks and limbs. Gua sha is also applied over the joints but not without first treating the channels that supply a joint area.

How is Gua sha applied?

The area to be treated is lubricated with oil or balm*. The area to be treated is press-stroked in one direction with a round-edged instrument until the petechiae are completely raised. Exactly how to safely apply Gua sha, to whom and when is learned from a teacher of Gua sha. (insert image of press stroking)

What kind of lubricant is used for Gua sha?

Thick oils such as peanut oil were used as a lubricant in China.

What kind of instrument is used for Gua sha?

A soupspoon, coin, slice of water buffalo horn or jade are used in Asia.

What does the type of sha indicate?

The color of the Sha is both diagnostic and prognostic. A practitioner trained in Gua sha notes the color of the sha, its quality and how fast it fades in making a ‘diagnosis’, that is, in assessing the location, quality, mutability and pattern of a presenting problem.

How fast will the petechiae fade?

The Sha petechiae should fade in 2-4 days. If it is slower to fade, indicating poor Blood circulation, the practitioner must ascertain whether it is deficiency of Blood, Qi or Yang, a deeper stagnation or organ deficiency at the root.

What are the benefits of Gua sha?

In most cases the patient feels an immediate shift in their condition particularly in their pain or sense of constraint, range of motion. In traditional medicine, Gua Sha moves stuck Qi and Blood, releasing the Exterior, mimicking sweating and moving Fluids.
Modern research has confirmed Gua sha reduces pain, inflammation while stimulating an immune protective response that can persist for days following treatment. Gua sha is a valuable treatment for musculoskeletal problems as well as internal organ conditions including respiratory and hepatic inflammation.

Is Gua sha safe?

Gua sha is safe when done by someone properly trained, and it is serious medicine. Knowing when to use it and what to expect from treatment is as important as good technique. Because Gua sha lifts cells out of the vascula and some of those cells may express from the skin, a practitioner of Gua sha must respect guidelines of safety to eliminate risk of exposure to blood borne pathogens.

Gua Sha is a technique that is designed to remove scar tissue and adhesions and thus improving blood flow and muscle movement.

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