Generally caused by minor trauma, bruises can be very painful and unsightly but they don’t have to be. Here are some simple ideas to try:

* The immediate application of a cold compress will reduce inflammation, decrease pain and prevent discoloration. If using ice be sure to put a barrier between the ice and your skin. Use in 10-minute applications as often as possible for the first 24 hours.

* Frankincense essential oil contains several compounds that can reduce the appearance of bruising. Rub several drops directly onto the affected area 3x daily

* Arnica ointment or cream is an herbal remedy that is excellent for bruises. It should only be used if the skin is not broken. Homeopathic arnica montana 30X is also an option and can be taken concurrently with the topical formulation.

* Several compresses may also help

  1. Apple Cider Vinegar mixed with warm water
  2. Witch Hazel compress
  3. Crushed parsley applied directly to the bruise (held in place with an adhesive bandage)
  4. Buchu or Comfrey tea compress

* An easy topical application is 1/4 tsp of unflavoured gelatin (Knox, for example) mixed with 1 Tbsp of boiling water. Stir for a minute and do a temperature test before applying directly to bruise. Leave on for 30 minutes then rinse. Gelatin is naturally very high in vitamin K and biotin which are essential to blood clotting.

* If bruising happens regularly, increasing dietary vitamin C, vitamin K, bromelain, bioflavonoids , garlic and general fluid intake while decreasing dairy products may help. Check with your doctor to rule out underlying causes.

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