One common reason people bruise easily is aging, according to Mayo Clinic. As the body ages, the skin becomes thinner and no longer provides the padding for the small blood vessels near the surface that it once did, so minor bumps cause bruises. Medications, including aspirin, increase bleeding and bruising.
Medications and supplements sometimes interfere with blood clotting and increase the chances of bruises, according to Mayo Clinic. Aspirin, an over-the-counter pain reliever, increases bleeding by thinning the blood. Anticoagulant and anti-platelet medications, which doctors often prescribe to patients at risk for heart attacks, increase bleeding under the skin. Dietary supplements, including fish oil and gingko, also have blood-thinning properties that increase bruising. Because people are more likely to use these medications as they age, the problem of bruising in the elderly is further increased.
Bruises are marks on the skin caused by bleeding that occurs under the surface, according to MedlinePlus. They occur when injuries to the capillaries allow blood to leak and pool near the skin. Most bruises heal within a couple of weeks, but some last much longer. Mayo Clinic indicates that once a bruise forms, the time for it to heal depends on how readily the body reabsorbs the blood. Elevating the area and applying ice are sometimes helpful for reducing pain.