If your bruise does not require an evaluation by a health professional, you may be able to use home treatment to help relieve pain, swelling, and stiffness.
- Rest and protect a bruised area.
- Ice will reduce pain and swelling. Apply ice or cold packs immediately to prevent or minimize swelling. Apply the ice or cold pack for 10 to 20 minutes, 3 or more times a day.
- For the first 48 hours after an injury, avoid things that might increase swelling, such as hot showers, hot tubs, hot packs, or alcoholic beverages.
- After 48 to 72 hours, if swelling is gone, apply heat and begin gentle exercisewith the aid of moist heat to help restore and maintain flexibility. Some experts recommend alternating between hot and cold treatments.