The Four Most Frequently Asked Questions about Gua Sha

What is Gua Sha?

Gua Sha is a soft tissue therapy that uses an instrument such as a piece of plastic, or originally a coin or horn to target specific muscles in the body. The instrument is used to rub into the skin/muscle. Usually oil or lotion is used to reduce friction during the therapy. Gua Sha stems from traditional chinese medicine and is widely used in many countries.  


Why would I need Gua Sha?

This therapy is great to use on painful, tight, shortened muscles that have reduced range of motion. Gua Sha helps to increase blood flow to the skin and muscles. Studies have shown a dramatic increase in blood flow to the skin for 2 days following a Gua Sha treatment. (1).

I have used Gua Sha with patients who have neck pain, midback pain, forearm pain and tenderness, plantar fasciitis and so many more conditions.


How long do the red marks take to heal?

After Gua Sha is performed your skin might appear red and inflamed but do not worry this is a normal result with instrument assisted muscle work. The action of rubbing causes blood to rush to the treated area and can also result in some capillary disruption. The redness or petechia usually goes away within 2-4 days. Using ice after the treatment is recommended to help reduce the swelling.


Am I a good candidate for Gua Sha?

Gua Sha is safe for most patients. It is not recommended to have Gua Sha if you have poor healing, any bleeding disorders or any (partial or complete) tears of the skin, muscle, tendon or ligament.

If you would like to give Gua Sha a try, schedule online or call Blue Sky Wellness Studio at 503 517 8222 to make an appointment.

In Health,

Vashi Chetty DC