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Gua Sha – the traditional healing technique that’s gaining more focus in 2022 |17 January 2022

Gua Sha – the traditional healing technique that’s gaining more focus in 2022

The Gua Sha tool being used on a woman’s face (Photo source: The Healing Practice)

The traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) technique ‘Gua Sha’ was among one of the wellness trends that were predicted to gain more focus this year. Gua Sha involves the use of a smooth-edged tool to scrape the skin in order to promote healing and circulation.

For those interested in learning more about this practice, we contacted and spoke to Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner, Chantal Hellevig-Lailam, to share her knowledge about Gua Sha.

Mrs Hellevig-Lailam studied TCM in China for seven years. She is a co-owner of the Traditional Chinese Medicine Clinic of Seychelles and is based in Finland, Helsinki, where she runs her own clinic – the Meridian Care of Finland.

Seychelles NATION: What is Gua Sha and what are the benefits of this practice? What is the difference between a Gua Sha and Jade Roller?

Mrs Hellevig-Lailam: In Chinese, ‘Gua’ means 'scrape' and Sha means 'petechiae' (tiny, flat red, purple spots). Gua Sha is a traditional Chinese medicine technique in which a trained professional uses a smooth-edged tool to stroke your skin while they press on it.

The idea is to gently scrape areas of your body where there is inflammation or stagnant qi (in traditional Chinese culture, qi is the vital energy that circulates through the body) to help improve circulation and promote healing.

Gua Sha is also very good for body pain, muscle tightness, fibromyalgia, arthritis, migraine, insomnia, swollen neck, sinusitis, high blood pressure, and many more.

Gua Sha can be done on the whole body and when done properly, it is very safe. Gua Sha on the face and on the body are done a bit differently.

Originally, people in China used Gua Sha to treat common ailments such as the flu, respiratory illnesses and pain all over their body. Originally, a Gua Sha tool is flat and smooth, used to rub, scrape and break the fascia and muscles allowing new blood flow to the area, cell regeneration and lymphatic circulation.

When comparing a Gua Sha and Jade Roller, the latter is a beautiful and modern tool that's been created to facilitate lymphatic drainage in the face and neck; it is lighter and does not go as deep as a Gua Sha which is the original tool.

Seychelles NATION: Who can safely make use of the Gua Sha technique? Are there any contraindications and side effects?

Mrs Hellevig-Lailam: The Gua Sha technique is suitable for most people. Contraindications are people with contagious skin illnesses, eczema, acne, sunburn or patients on blood-thinners. The side effects could be some bruising when the skin is scraped hard.

While Gua Sha can be used often, always let the bruising fade away before getting more treatment to the same area.

For more information:

-           Send a private message on Facebook page: Traditional Chinese Clinic of Seychelles

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