Tell Bruises to Cool It
1. Ice therapy – Apply ice immediately after the injury to reduce blood flow around the area. Cooling the blood vessels can reduce the amount of blood that leaks into the surrounding tissue. This can prevent the bruise from being as apparent and reduce swelling.
2. Heat – You can apply heat to boost circulation and increase blood flow. This will help to clear away the trapped blood after the bruise has already formed. Applying heat can also help to loosen tense muscles and relieve pain. You can use a heating pad or a hot water bottle. Soaking in a hot bath is another option.
3. Compression – Wrap the bruised area in an elastic bandage. This will squeeze the tissues and help prevent blood vessels from leaking. Using compression can lessen the severity of the bruise and help to reduce pain and swelling.
4. Elevation – Elevate the bruised area so that it’s above the heart. This helps to relieve pain and drain fluid away from the bruised area. Elevation can also reduce pressure and compression. This gives you the perfect chance to rest and relax, which can also help the healing process.
5. Arnica – Arnica is a homeopathic herb that is said to reduce inflammation and swelling, thus making it an ideal treatment for bruising. A 2010 study found that topical arnica ointment effectively reduced laser-induced bruising. You can use an arnica ointment or gel on the bruise a few times per day.