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Chinese Gua Sha Technique

Gua Sha massage is a traditional Chinese medical technique that is not as well known as acupuncture, but just as effective. Gua means to scrape and Sha means toxins, which can give you a clue about how the practice is used. During a Gua Sha session, a practitioner will use a special tool to gently scrape your skin and stimulate circulation.

Gua Sha treatment improves the flow of your life energy (Qi). It can help with chronic pain, poor circulation, fatigue, infections and emotional stress.
Gua Sha technique is a two-step process, first phase of which is applying oil onto your skin. The  Gua Sha oil has healing herbs that will help the removal of toxins. Then your practitioner will use a special tool to scrape in specific patterns over your neck and back.

As the practitioner moves along the surface of your skin, small red, purple or green dots will begin to appear. Red spots show up when toxins are being released. Purple spots are indicative of stagnant blood being revitalized. Green spots show the presence of both stagnant blood and toxins. In some cases, the treatment may produce small colorless bumps that are similar to goose bumps; these will disappear in a few days.

The scraping doesn’t hurt, but it will produce a reddening of the skin. After your initial treatment, you may notice some painless bruising over the treatment sites. During the scraping, there is a push up of fluid ahead of the tool. Afterward there is a vacuum left which draws toxins up and out of your body and to the surface of your skin.

Chinese Gua Sha treatments don’t need to take place every week. After your initial treatment, you can visit the practitioner every month or every two months to keep the healing consistent. Many acupuncturists offer Gua Sha as a complementary therapy to their acupuncture treatments.
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