Cairo spa offering snake massages

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(CBS News) – If you have ophidiophobia then this story isn’t for you. A spa in Cairo, Egypt is offering snake massages.

It’s supposed to help you relax, says the owner, Safwat Sedki. “It has two aims,” he says. “The physical aim is to improve blood circulation and mental stimulation, and the emotional aim is that it releases endorphins that help with the ‘happy hormone’ that helps people regain confidence and strengthen the immune system.”

The masseur first rubs oil on the client before applying a combination of pythons and 28 different types of snakes. A key component to making all of this work: the snakes are non-venomous. “When we first introduced the sessions, a lot of people were afraid. But they’ve come around,” says Sedki.

One client may seem confident but admits he too was a bit nervous at first. “I feel totally relaxed. The way the snakes move is unreal, it feels very strange, different from the regular massage,” says Abdelwahab.

If you fancy a 30-minute relaxing reptile rub, it’ll only set you back a little more than $6.

You may or may not be surprised that snakes have a long history in medicine. The ancient Greek god of medicine, Asclepius, wielded a rod with a snake entwined around it.

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