Useful Essential Oils
Which essential oils are effective for bruises?
The following essential oils have traditionally been used for bruises:
- Helichrysum – dilute it 2-5% in a penetrating carrier oil (10-25 drops per tablespoon) before applying it to affected areas
- German Chamomile – dilute it 3% in jojoba or hazelnut oil (15 drops per tablespoon) before applying it to affected areas.
About The Condition
What Is A Bruise?
A bruise is a skin injury that causes blood cells to be damaged and collect near the surface of the skin, making it appear blue or black. Sometimes, it starts off reddish and becomes yellow or green as it heals.
What Causes Bruises?
Generally, people get bruises when they bump into something or when they get hit by something. However, sometimes vigorous exercise can cause microscopic tears underneath the skin that appear as bruises. Bruises that appear for no reason can be a sign of a bleeding disorder and you should ask your doctor to investigate, especially if the bruising is accompanied by frequent nose bleeds or bleeding gums. Elderly people often bruise more easily because their skin is thinner. Bruises are also more likely if you are taking medication that thins the blood.
You should consult a doctor if a bruise is painful, if there is also swelling, if it affects your vision or if you think there could also be a broken bone or concussion (e.g. if the bruise is on your head). If the bruise takes more than 2 weeks to start healing or more than 4 weeks to disappear, you should consult a doctor.
What Are Conventional Medical Treatments For Bruises?
Generally, doctors recommend the following home treatment:
- 1. An ice pack or similar (wrapped in a towel) and applied for 20-30 minutes.
- 2. Elevate large bruises on the feet or legs as much as possible for the first 24 hours.
- 3. Acetaminophen can be taken for the pain (as per the instructions on the bottle). But aspirin or ibuprofen should not be taken because they slow the blood from clotting and may prolong the bleeding.
- 4. Once the bruise starts to heal (generally after about 48 hours), applying a warm washcloth to it for around 10 minutes can increase blood flow and help the bruise to disappear. This should be done two to three times a day.
There are no other specific medical treatments for bruises.
What Are Alternative Treatments For Bruises?
Some recommend a comfrey compress, but it can be difficult to obtain. Others say applying warm water mixed with vinegar or witch hazel or applying arnica creams or fresh parsley leaves helps. And of course, essential oils can help (see the Useful Essential Oils tab for details).