Wednesday, October 14, 2009


This post answers the question, "What is the dumbest thing you've tried so far for migraine relief?"


My acupuncturist-turned-massage-therapist got the idea from someone at a conference he attended in NYC, and apparently cupping works for some headache/migraine patients. In the traditional form, you use fire to take the air out of glass cups and put them on the skin to create a suction, but he used plastic cups and a pump. I didn't plan on doing it but he told me about it during the massage and we decided to try it afterward. The cups were applied on my upper back and neck and remained there for 10 minutes. As you can see, it leaves huge protruding marks - this is normal and was expected. They slowly faded and went away after about five days, but during that time I had to cover the neck ones with makeup, collared shirts and my hair.

I would post a Web link, but unfortunately I couldn't find a reliable Web site that even explains cupping, much less says that it works. The idea behind it is to get the qi/chi flowing and bring toxins to the surface, leaving room for fresh blood to circulate underneath. Or something like that. It didn't hurt except for the neck ones and I think that was pain from the massage. In fact, the skin being sucked into the cups almost felt like a massage.

The bad news is I still had headaches (and neck soreness, but probably from the massage) the days following cupping, and my husband was so upset about it that he refuses to let me do it again. Normally I'd argue with him, but I can't find proof that this works, and it does seem weird and it leaves marks, so I'm going to agree with him and say goodbye to cupping.

So what's the dumbest thing you've tried for migraine relief?