Tips For Treating Bruises
Bruising of the skin and underlying tissue is a normal occurrence after some cosmetic procedures. The skin naturally bruises as a way to deal with any sustained injury. As small veins and capillaries rupture, red blood cells leak and begin to collect in isolated areas underneath the skin. This causes a discoloration of the skin (reddish, blueish, or blackish appearance).
Most bruises resolve on their own within 2 weeks (some may disappear even sooner). However, many patients seek to get rid of the appearance of bruising as quickly as possible following their cosmetic procedure. Here are some simple ways to speed up the healing process:
Apply Cold & Warmth
The most effective way to treat bruises, and even limit the extent of bruising that may occur, is to apply a cold compress to the contusion as soon as possible. The application of cold reduces tissue swelling and limits the amount of blood that can collect under the skin. Simply apply an ice pack (or even a bag of frozen peas will do the trick) to the bruise for 15-minute intervals over the first day of healing. Use a thin towel as a protection barrier rather than applying the ice pack directly to the skin.
As the bruise begins to heal (around 48 hours after your procedure) you can begin to apply a warm compress to the bruised area (again in 15-minute intervals). The warmth will help boost blood circulation in the area, which can help to speed up healing.
Keeping the bruised area elevated can help minimize bruising by reducing the ability for blood to pool. Simply put, elevating the area can help carry excess blood away to other parts of the body. This is why we encourage patients to use plenty of pillows to prop up bruised areas while they sleep.
The Vbeam is a laser that is safe for all skin times and is effective for quicker resolution of bruising. The Vbeam uses Pulsed Dye Laser (PDL) technology and specifically targets areas of the skin delivering an intense and calculated burst of light in the blood vessels in the dermis. This causes the associated pigment to disperse and thus resolve quicker.
Skin Care Products
Applying vitamin K topical creams directly to bruised skin has been clinically shown to speed up healing. Several other studies have shown that taking an Arnica Montana herbal supplement during the recovery process can also help.
The use of specialized medical compression garments or bandages can help improve circulation, thus preventing bruising and swelling post-procedure. Similar to elevating the area, compression garments force excess blood to flow away from the injured site.
Eating a Good Diet
Eating the right foods before and after a procedure can make a big difference. Consuming foods that are rich in vitamins C, B12, B9, or K can help the skin to heal more quickly. To get the vitamins, eat things like green leafy vegetables, citrus fruits, wild fish, and clean protein. It’s also important to avoid sugar, trans fat, and processed foods which actually promote bruising.