Gua Sha Treatments: What It Is and How It Works?


Do you have stubborn aches and pains in your body that have simply not responded to your previous and current treatment efforts? Are you seeking a non-invasive manner of relief that will allow you to move freely and comfortably again? If so, then you should strongly consider visiting a certified acupuncturist for Gua Sha treatments.

The history of gua sha traces back thousands of years and is one of the tools used in Traditional Chinese Medicine, or TCM. Over time, the practice spread throughout Asia and is now becoming better known in the West. In China, the practice of Gua Sha is often practiced in the home. Self-treatments are common and mothers may utilize it to assist their children when ill.

What Is Gua Sha?

What Is Gua Sha

The practice of Gua Sha is generally performed by an acupuncturist though you may find other TCM practitioners who are trained to perform this medical treatment. Depending upon the location of your pain or other symptoms, the practitioner will determine the appropriate areas of your body to treat.

A liberal amount of olive, coconut or similar oil is applied all over and around the treatment area. Then, with the use of a special Gua Sha tool, the practitioner rubs and scrapes the skin. The motions are made from the inside to the outside of the body so that a stroke would go from the knee to the ankle and not the other way around.

The instrument has a very smooth surface so as to not puncture your skin during the strokes, which are quite intense. The techniques used may involve long or short motions and will exert significant pressure on your skin and the tissues beneath.

How to Prepare for a Treatment?

How to Prepare for a Treatment

The treatment is non-invasive however as your skin surface will be scraped, it’s important to take note of a few things:

  • Avoid tanning for several days prior to your appointment.
  • Schedule your appointment understanding that the treated area may be discolored for a few days. You may not want to have it done a day before a pool party!
  • Areas with open sores, moderate to severe acne, wounds and other skin troubles cannot be treated.
  • Discuss your medical history with the practitioner. Reveal and current or past conditions and any surgical procedures or other scar tissue that you have had. Take copies of any x-rays, nerve tests or related medical documents to your consultation appointment.

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