Like acupuncture, the use of gua sha is another way to encourage internal movement in the body leading to pain relief and the promotion of healing. Usually, we use gua sha to get things moving again.
The moving action of gua sha helps with:
- Improved range of motion
- Pain elimination
- Avoiding an oncoming common cold or help in quieting a lingering cough.
Gua sha is used throughout Asia, and has a long history of use in China going back thousands of years. In action, this technique is the repeated pressing and stroking across the surface of the skin with a smooth-edged tool. The stroking releases stagnation in the subcutaneous fascia, and causes little red dotes known as petechiae or sha to appear on the skin.
Gua sha works on stagnation in our body, which slows our functions and causes pain. So its not surprising that sha is often more concentrated in areas of pain. So when the treatment is effective, we see a distinctive redness of the skin (sha). The red dots quickly fade within 24 hours and disappear in 3-4 days.
A couple of mechanisms create the benefits of gua sha. We know that petechiae or sha, developed during gua sha are blood cells that have been pressed outside of capillaries. Once released, the body immediately begins the process of reabsorbing these blood cells. It is this process of reabsorption, along with heightened local circulation, that leads to the immune boosting, anti-inflammatory, and pain relieving benefits of this technique.
Gua sha also creates a temporary therapeutic petechiae that increases the up-regulation of heme oxygenase-1 (an anti-inflammatory enzyme that effects organs). This effect can help with internal organ problems such as cough, asthma, hepatitis, and liver disease.
Gua sha in Seattle
The mechanism of Gua sha is very unique and in certain cases it is a great choice for therapy. Jon will work with you to develop a personalized holistic treatment plan, tailored to your condition and desired outcome.