The ancient practice of gua sha (pronounced as gwa shah) is realizing a bit of a comeback in modern chiropractic treatment. In the past it was considered a form of folk medicine, but renowned doctors report it has proven beneficial to their patients in many cases.
Gua sha involves the use of a blunt-blade instrument to scrape over the skin, and purportedly this contributes to mobilization of soft tissue. The application can present some amount of discomfort during the treatment, but a great many patients experience pain relief afterwards.
Gua Sha in History
The Chinese translation of this treatment is “to scrape away fever.” In Vietnamese, the term is cao gio, which means, “to scrape wind.” Both of the old schools believe that sickness is caused by fever caught from the wind, and this practice relieves the fever. Asians have been practicing the technique by whatever name since the 2nd or 3rd century.
In ancient times and on into the modern era, methods have varied as to how gua sha is performed. Some practices use a coin with oils, and others use a coin inserted into the yolk of a boiled egg. Wrapping the egg in cloth and rubbing down the forehead is a common practice in the case of fever.
* Heat stroke
* Bronchitis, emphysema, asthma, dyspnea, and cough
* Sluggish circulation
* Tendon and muscle injury
* Urinary disorders
* Digestive disorders
* Pain, stiffness, and immobility
* Reactions caused by food poisoning
While many of the perceived health benefits of the past have not been proven, modern Phoenix chiropractor practice does use gua sha for chronic conditions of muscle tightness. Muscles have two parts, which cause tightness. Of course, the actual muscle can be tight, but so can the envelope that contains the muscle. This is called the fascia. A tight muscle develops over time caused by the fascia shrinking or becoming shorter.
Muscles respond through forces applied to them. A repetitive load against ligaments, bones, and muscles causes them to grow stronger. Cells stimulate growth in areas where the gua sha scrapes the fascia, and if there is an injury, the treatment also breaks up the adhesions that form.
Although all chiropractor Phoenix doctors may not believe in the benefit of the practice, results show that patients respond positively to the practice of gua sha.
The chiropractors at Arizona Pain Specialists offer Gua Sha at multiple locations serving Phoenix, Glendale, Chandler, Scottsdale and surrounding areas. Call the best pain clinics in the Valley today at (602) 507-6550. Same day visits available!