Gua Sha

Have you ever heard the word Gua Sha and wondered what it meant?  Gua Sha is a traditional Chinese healing treatment in which a trained professional uses a smooth edge tool to stimulate a specific area of the body to relieve pain.  The word Gua means "to scrape" while sha means "sand", referring to the sand like appearance to the petechiae (bruising) on the skin.  The petechia are tiny raised spots on the skin from using the tool, which brings blood to the surface and shouldn't last more than a couple days. 

The tools can be made of stone (jade or quartz), plastic or stainless steel.  With oil placed on the skin these tools are used to scrape the skin with short or long strokes in a downward motion to help relieve pain.  

Gua Sha is performed on the back, gluteal, neck, arms or legs, beginning with a mild pressure that is gradually increased depending on the patients tolerance level.  The treatment gets to the source of the pain and has been shown in some cases to provide immediate and long lasting relief.  Gua sha can promote increased blood circulation, relieve muscle tension and pain, while decreasing inflammation and headache.  

If you are interested in gua sha, let the front desk know before scheduling your next appointment and I can work with you to perform it as part of your treatment. 

Lindsay Tirko, LMT