Bruise Clues

It is a fine morning, you get out of bed to perform your morning rituals and as you admire yourself through the mirror, you notice a bruise on your body. You cannot remember when, where, or how you got it so you begin to hunt for explanations for the mysterious bruise. But apparently it is all for naught.

It is somewhat normal for us to have these unexplained bruising sometimes, but occasionally, they can entail something more sinister. A bruise, or contusion, is a common skin injury caused by the breakage of blood vessels under the skin. The black and blue mark is a result of leaking blood cells that gather together near the skin’s surface in a process called ecchymosis.

Hematomas usually occur when one bumps into an object or vice-versa. There are, however, other causes that you are probably not aware of:

Rugged exercises: Weight-lifters and athletes undergo intense training programs. Sometimes training can cause microscopic ruptures in blood vessels.

Age: The elderly tend to have weaker tissues that rupture easily. As we age our skin loses its and flexibility. The tissues and fats that protect our capillaries fade and our capillary walls grow weaker. It becomes significantly easier for one to become bruised so it should not be too alarming for an aged person to manifest one.

Vitamin C Deficiency: A person with a deficiency in Ascorbic Acids can become infected with scurvy. When we think of scurvy we typically think of pirates. Scurvy was a huge problem for voyagers and resulted in the deaths of many seafarers. The old world had discovered many ways to preventing scurvy and one of those was through the consumption of citrus fruits. The point is, eating oranges will help prevent the development of bruises caused by scurvy. Scurvy is rarely seen in adults today but babies and children are likely to have it.

Physical Abuse: Sometimes you bump into people. Other times people bump into you. If people bump into you or someone you know too often you might want to consider notifying the authorities.

Unexplained bruises are usually caused during minor incidents or bumping into objects while you are asleep. If the latter is plausible, you might want to consider tidying your bed. When I was a child I rolled over my Nintendo 64 controller and woke up with a mysterious purple mark on my arm. It was not a very pleasant experience.

Though finding bruises on your body may not be a cause for alarm, there are certain things you should look out for. If you are frequently finding unexplained bruises you may want to consult your physician as it may signify an underlying health problem. Another indicator of health problems includes sudden bruising; bruises that seem to come out of nowhere. Before going to a doctor prepare a list of medications that you are taking and familiarize yourself with your symptoms. Your physician will need to know what you are experiencing so he/she could make a proper analysis. Frequent bruising could be a genetic trait; if your family has a history of bruising easily you will want to take note of that.