Home treatment for bruising involves applying ice with a wash cloth covering the skin for 15 minutes several times within the first 48 hours, elevating the bruised area, and resting it properly, states WebMD. It helps to take pain relievers, such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen or naproxen, if the bruise is painful.
About 48 hours after the bruise occurs, press a heat pack or a wash cloth dampened with warm water on the affected region several times throughout the day for faster healing, recommends WebMD. Bruises usually disappear within two weeks, and pain and tenderness often improve within several days.
Bruises occur when blood oozes out into the tissues below the skin due to the breakage of blood vessels close to the skin's surface, explains Mayo Clinic. They initially appear as black and blue and gradually change color as they start to heal.
A doctor's diagnosis is necessary if the bruise is very painful and swollen, persists three days after a mild injury, or has a lump on it, notes Mayo Clinic. Frequent bruising that occurs in large patches without an apparent cause also requires medical attention. Those who easily bruise, have histories of considerable bleeding, or experience unusual bleeding in the nose, gums or other areas should also consult a doctor, as these symptoms can indicate problems with blood clotting.