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  • Scripps Health

Bewildered by bruises?

Six things to know, including home remedies

Most people get bruises occasionally, from children to seniors. Bruises or contusions as they are also known may occur after an accident, such as a fall, or from bumping into or being struck by a blunt object.

Usually a bruise, which is marked by bleeding into the skin of the bruised area, is nothing to worry about and eventually heals on its own and the skin discoloration disappears.

“Bruising is a normal response to an injury,” says Sophia Bradley, DO, a primary care physician at Scripps Coastal Medical Center Vista.

“Tiny blood vessels beneath the skin can be damaged by even a small impact, such as bumping into a coffee table," says Dr. Bradley, who specializes in family medicine. "While bruises can be challenging to treat, there are home remedies that may speed up healing and minimize their appearance."

Here are six things you need to know about those black-and-blue marks:

1. The color of a bruise is blood pooling under your skin

A bruise occurs when small blood vessels under your skin bleed. Since the skin isn’t broken, the blood leaks out into the space around the vessels. This pooling changes the color of the skin above the injury. At first, the skin is red or purple, but progresses to yellow or green before healing completely.