What is Gua Sha

The meaning of gua sha is to scrap or rub something. Gua means to rub and sha means sand. It is a technique that was part of traditional Chinese medicine. In this skin is rubbed with an instrument which has rounded edges. This rubbing is done to encourage the formation of petechiae. Petechiae are small areas where broken capillary veins breed into layers of skin. They are not excruciating.

This is done to reduce the pain associated with chronic disorder. The technique can be done by using the back of a spoon, the edge of a coin, the rounded edge of a metal cap. The skin is pressured by these instruments which result in the emergence of small red sha that will fade in 2-3 days. The reason behind raising the small red spots is to promote the circulation and metabolic process. After having this patient feels immediate relief from pain, stiffness, fever, cough, nausea. It is also helpful in curing respiratory and digestive problems.

This technique is mostly applied to back, neck, shoulders, buttocks and limps. Very rarely it is applied at the chest and abdomen.

To apply this technique firstly body is massaged with oil. If there are any cuts ,injuries on the skin then on that parts gua sha instruments are not applied rather fingers are use to cover that area. Then instrument is rubbed in downward strokes. Then small spots will rise in that area. But if there is no blood stasis then petechiae will not appear and skin will only then pink. The apperance of sha do not point toward that there had been stasis in blood in that location of the body.

The rashes that appear on the skin seem to be agonizing as they are clearly visible .But in actual they are completely unproblematic ,they fades quickly and doesnot indicate that the gua has caused any injury. Red spots are an indication that toxins are being released. Where the area is deep purple ther blood is extremely stagnant. Very light colored sha indicate the deficiency of blood, if it is fresh red, then it is the indication of recent penetration. If brown, then blood may be dry.

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