There is nothing like brilliant colors of a bruise to advertise your clumsiness. Big or small, blue, yellow, or brown, we all get bruises of varying degrees from one time or another.
If we lived in a cotton-coated world with no sharp edges, it would be a different story, but we all bruise like delicate fruit and some people bruise more easily than others.
Although we all have to suffer from bruises, we don’t have to just sit back and let nature take its course, in fact, there are a couple home remedies you can try at home to help speed up the healing process of that unsightly bruise.
What Exactly is a Bruise?
A bruise is a discoloration that appears on the surface of the skin. When a part of your body experiences a blow or impact, the underlying blood vessels rupture and blood pools below the surface of the dermis, resulting in a bluish black mark.
Causes of Bruises
Bruises typically occur from bumping into another object or person. However, bruises may appear for several reasons:
- Bruises commonly occur in people taking certain medications such as blood thinners.
- People who engage in intense exercise and weightlifting may experience bruising due to tiny tears in underlying blood vessels.
- People of a more advanced aged may bruise more easily due to the thinning of their skin and tissue supporting the blood vessels may become more delicate.
- When a bruise first appears, it may initially be red in color, however, after a couple hours, the bruise will transform into a bluish color. During the end of its lifecycle, the bruise will turn green or yellow during the healing process.
- Bruises are typically tender, however, with each color transformation, the bruise becomes less and less painful.
When to Seek Medical Attention
Often bruises are not serious, however, there are certain occasions when they indicate a larger medical problem or may require medical attention. Call your physician if your bruise falls under the following categories:
- If the bruise seemingly appears for no reason at all.
- If you believe the bruising is the result of a broken bone.
- If the bruise comes along with swelling and severe pain. This is especially relevant if you take blood thinners.
- If the bruising is occurring underneath a fingernail or toenail and accompanied by pain.
- If the bruise doesn’t start to clear up within a couple weeks.
Essential Oils for Bruises
If you can’t stand the sight of your bruise and want to speed up the healing process, there are some essential oils you can use to encourage a speedy recovery.
There are multiple reasons that lavender is consistently the top-selling essential oil. It is one of the most diverse essential oil with more medicinal properties and health applications than you could possibly list. It is also the gentlest acting of the essential oils and the one most unlikely to cause any negative reaction.
It is even considered to be perfectly safe for children which makes it a “must have” oil for so many families. When it comes to bruising, it is no surprise to find lavender oil on our list.
It is best to apply lavender essential oil immediately after the bruise has occurred as it helps constrict blood flow. Immediately after a blow or impact has occurred, place an ice pack directly on to the affected area.
- To make an ice pack, place some ice cubes in a plastic bag and then wrap the plastic bag in a cloth and apply to the affected area on and off for no more than 15 minutes.
- Be sure not to place ice directly on the skin and do not apply for more than the directed time as it could further damage the skin.
- Once you have removed the ice pack, mix a couple drops of lavender essential oil in a carrier oil and massage onto the affected area.
- Repeat this home remedy every couple hours until the bruise starts to vanish. Lavender essential oil is also great for reducing swelling and inflammation of the injured area.
Cypress essential oil is less popular than lavender but also has a staggering number of diverse medicinal applications.
It is often used on the skin to heal minor wounds and is also a popular treatment to relieve varicose veins, eliminate cellulite and stretch marks. It works because it can effectively stimulate the flow of blood and prevent it from pooling.
These characteristics make it perfect to prevent bruising and eliminate their appearance.
Cypress, just like lavender, should be applied directly after the injury has occurred. Cypress helps prevent blood from pooling underneath the surface of the skin, preventing bruising from occurring.
- Apply an ice pack to the affected area on and off for 15 minutes and then massage cypress essential mixed with a carrier oil directly onto the affected area.
- Repeat this process several times a day until healing occurs.
Helichrysum essential oil is well known and respected for its many skin applications. Despite its expense, it remains a very popular natural treatment for the skin. It can be applied topically in combination with a suitable carrier oil to help heal sun damage, abrasions and scaring. It can also be applied to your skin to help reduce the appearance of bruises and other blemishes.
About six hours to a day after injury has occurred, switch over the helichrysum essential oil, which encourages blood circulation. Once swelling has calmed down, blood circulation encourages the healing of the bruise, causing the mark to fade more rapidly.
- Combined with a carrier oil, gently rub helichrysum essential oil directly onto the bruised area.
- Apply this essential oil every couple hours until the bruise starts to fade.
If you’ve received a particularly nasty bump or blow to your skin, lemongrass essential oil will help alleviate the pain. This warming essential oil will help soothe achy muscles and reduce swelling.
Apply with a carrier oil anytime you need a little bit of pain relief. Lemongrass essential oil also helps repair damaged tissue, helping to speed up the healing process.
Geranium essential oil is beneficial for the healing process as it helps repair damaged tissue. It is popular for a variety of skin issues from reducing wrinkles to fighting infection. It can also be used to help treat and diminish the nasty appearance of unsightly bruises and blemishes.
Mix a couple drops of this fragrant floral oil with a carrier oil and gently massage onto the affected area to help your body with the healing process.
If you have a family with young children who are prone to rough and tumble, frankincense is another of those essential oils that you would be remiss not to keep in your medicine cabinet.
Unlike many essential oils, it is considered safe for topical application on your children and as well as its applications for the skin, it can be used to relieve stress, boost the immune system and according to research may even prevent cancer.
Frankincense oil contains a compound called Boswellia and numerous other compounds which can help reduce the ugly appearance of bruising. It can be used as an ingredient in one of the bruise reduction methods explained below or even as a single oil.
Mix a few drops of your frankincense oil with a suitable base oil and apply it directly to the affected area of your skin two or three times each day until the bruise has disappeared.
7) Roman Chamomile
Roman chamomile essential oil is a gentle acting oil with a powerful medicinal punch. It can be applied to the skin usually in combination with other essential oils to reduce the appearance of scars and bruises. Both Roman and German chamomile oils have wound healing (cicatrisant) properties and are popularly used in the beauty industry because they can help diminish the appearance of scars and spots.
Mix two or three drops of chamomile oil with a suitable amount of carrier oil and apply it to your bruise. This should both diminish the appearance of the mark and protect against potential infection from broken skin.
Essential Oil Blends to Treat Bruising
If you are clumsy or bruising is a common occurrence in your life, you may want to try some ultra-healing blends. Keep these recipes in your first aid kit the next time you want to get rid of an ugly bruise and fast.
Immediately treating your bruise with a cold compress will not only help reduce swelling, but it will decrease the severity of your bruise. In a container of cold water mix:
• 1 drop of geranium essential oil
• 2 drops of lavender essential oil
• 3 drops of rosemary essential oil
Dip a clean cloth in this mixture and apply directly to the affected area for about ten minutes. Apply this compress twice a day until healing occurs.
When it comes to healing bruises, it is recommended to switch up between hot and cold compresses. For a healing hot compress, use the same recipe and directions as the cold compress.
If your bruise is accompanied by inflammation or swelling, make a balm with witch hazel lotion mixed with soothing essential oils.
- Mix a couple drops of lavender essential oil with a dollop of witch hazel lotion. Chamomile essential oil works well too.
- Apply a cool compress to the affected area to help reduce swelling.
- After 15 minutes, remove the cool compress and massage the essential oil infused lotion directly onto the affected area.
- Apply this remedy two to three times a day until the bruise has healed.
Arnica Ointment/Essential Oil Combo
Arnica ointment is great for healing bruises, however, infusing it with essential oils doubles its healing power. Mix a couple drops of essential oil with the arnica ointment and apply to the affected area after a cold compress.
Bruise Healing Oil
Apply this healing oil directly to your bruise to help reduce pain, swelling, inflammation, and discoloration. Mix:
• 1 teaspoon of jojoba oil
• 1 drop of lavender essential oil
• 2 drops of rosemary essential oil
• 2 drops of geranium essential oil
After a cold or warm compress, apply this healing oil liberally onto the affected area several times a day until the bruise heals.
Do not apply any essential oils to your skin without diluting them with a carrier oil first. It is true that lavender essential oil is a gentle acting oil but although some people recommend applying it neat, it is always best to be cautious and dilute it first especially if you are using it in your children who may have more sensitive skin.