A bruise can heal more quickly by elevating the bruised area and applying ice, using compression, and protecting and resting the area, advises WebMD. Avoiding things that cause swelling such as alcohol, hot packs and hot tubs or showers for the first 48 hours also aid the healing process.
The bruised area should be elevated above heart level and iced for 10 to 20 minutes, three or more times a day, says WebMD. The bruise should be wrapped with an elastic bandage to decrease swelling, though it must not be wrapped too tightly. A need to use the wrap for more than two to three days may indicate a more serious problem that requires physician evaluation.
The area should be gently rubbed to stimulate blood flow, with moist heat applied after the swelling is gone, according to WebMD. Witch hazel helps heal damaged veins and arnica stimulates healing.
Take vinegar and mix it with warm water. Then, place the mixture on the bruised area. Witch hazel or arnica can also be substituted for the vinegar. Apply daily.
Choose medicine with acetaminophen in it when dealing with bruising rather than aspirin. Aspirin and medications containing ibuprofen can create more bleeding and bruising.
Best Health Magazine says to avoid bruising, make sure that the bruise sufferer is getting enough vitamin C. Vitamin C can help to strengthen capillary walls, which means that the vessels are less likely to bleed and create bruises in the first place.
Bruises normally heal within two to four weeks, depending on where they are located, notes WebMD. As a bruise heals, one should watch for signs of infection, development of new or more severe symptoms and abnormally long healing time. Bruises accompanied by severe swelling and pain may indicate a more serious problem, such as a sprain or fracture.