Bruise on the face


Bruises are also called hematomas or, colloquially, bruises and are hemorrhages in the skin. Accordingly, blood has collected in the soft tissue due to a blood vessel injury. Just like anywhere on the body, this can also happen on the face.

As a rule, the blood vessels are injured or even destroyed by physical force, such as knocks or blows. A bruise on the face strongly discolors the skin if it is relatively close to the surface of the skin; the color can vary from black / blue to yellow / green, depending on how old the bruise is.


The cause of a bruise is one can be different. In most cases, however, a bruise on the face is the result of violent impact, which has damaged a blood vessel due to its shock.

In the face, this often happens as a result of a fall, a bruise or an accident, such as a traffic or sports accident in which the face hits something at high speed. Furthermore, blows to the face are also among the causes of a bruise. There are also bruises without external force; these are seldom on the face. However, this only affects people who take blood-thinning medication or who are seriously ill.


Falls can bruise the face as the fall can result in a severe impact on the face.

In the event of a fall, the person concerned has an unwanted, sudden contact with a deeper level. If you cannot hold on or catch yourself with your arms fast enough while falling, your face may come into contact with the earth. Depending on the height and speed at which the person falls and hits the ground to different degrees, the size of the vascular injury also varies. The bigger the vascular injury and the more blood vessels are injured, the bigger and more painful the bruise on the face.


A slap in the face is a common cause of a bruise.

It does not matter whether the blow is made with a fist, flat hand or, for example, a stick. The decisive factor is the strength of the blow and thus the speed and force with which the blow hits the face. The stronger the blow, the more blood vessels are injured and can bleed into the skin, which determines not only the size, but also the pain of the bruise.

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For no apparent reason

Bruising on the face does not always have to be the result of external violence; there are also the following other causes.

People who take medication, such as blood thinners, have inhibited blood clotting, which increases bleeding. But even such bruises are usually caused by a shock, i.e. force, which is hardly noticed by the person. In addition, people with a congenital bleeding disorder such as hemophilia or hemophilia get bruises particularly quickly.

In addition, a spontaneous bruise can be caused by an infectious disease or cancer.

Concomitant symptoms

A typical symptom of a bruise is skin discoloration when the bruise is superficial.At the beginning the skin is discolored red, but this color changes quite quickly to a dark blue or purple. This is the basis of the biochemical breakdown of the blood. After about seven days, the bruise turns green to yellowish in color before disappearing again.

Another symptom is swelling. Aqueous fluids, in this case blood, collect in the body tissue and can only be gradually removed or broken down again. It is possible that the bruise is deep, so that you can hardly see any discoloration, but you can feel a swelling in this part of the body. The pressure exerted by the blood from the injured vessel on the surrounding tissue can cause pain. Correspondingly, pain is also one of the symptoms of a bruise.


Swelling occurs when an aqueous body fluid accumulates in the body tissue, either because too much fluid is released into the tissue or because the removal of fluid is prevented.

In the event of a bruise, blood collects in the tissue through an injured vessel and causes swelling to develop. The swelling of a bruise is usually localized to the area of ​​the bruise. In a joint, including the temporomandibular joint, swelling can lead to a reduction in movement.


A bruise on the face can cause pain just as it can in other parts of the body.

It is possible that pain arises from pressure or is present without being touched. This depends on the swelling, as the leaked blood exerts pressure on the surrounding tissue (e.g. muscles, bones or nerves). The swelling in turn depends on the strength of the force. The pain is strongest on the first day after the violence and becomes less and less over time, as the leaked blood is broken down and the pressure on the tissue decreases.


A small bruise that does not injure a large vessel does not require medical treatment. The affected person can treat himself and thus influence the size of the bruise by cooling the part of the body immediately after the bruise has formed. When ice is used, a layer of fabric should be placed between the skin and the ice to avoid cold. Cooling causes the blood vessels to contract and prevents the bruise from spreading very far.

The principle of elevating the affected part of the body works in a similar way, because elevating also prevents increased blood leakage from the injured vessel. When sleeping, the head can be raised with an additional pillow.

In addition, after a few days you can try to stimulate the blood circulation in the area of ​​the bruise with warm compresses and thus accelerate the breakdown of the leaked blood. Gels and creams that have decongestant or anti-inflammatory effects can also help.

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Heparin ointment

Herparin is normally used to prevent blood clots, so heparin promotes superficial blood flow and prevents the liquid blood from being converted into a solid state by the body. In this way, the breakdown of the leaked blood can be promoted in the event of a bruise and the bruise disappears more quickly.

However, this effect does not occur in every patient and is also discussed controversially by medical professionals. A heparin ointment is used particularly in patients with a coagulation disorder.


The diagnosis of a bruise arises from two areas.

On the one hand, the patient is asked about the cause of his hematoma on the face. This now provides information about an accident, fall or blow, for example. On the other hand, the patient is asked by the doctor about symptoms typical of bruises, or the doctor examines signs such as swelling and skin discoloration himself. Since a bruise on the face is usually clearly visible and thus unmistakable, the diagnosis does not take long.


The length of time a bruise takes depends heavily on its size, but those affected can expect around seven days.

At first, the bruise is red in color and painful swelling appears. From one day after the injury, the bruise can turn blue or black. After four to seven days, the bruise will turn green and then change its color to yellow after seven days. When the skin on the affected area has returned to its original color, the bruise will have disappeared because the blood that has leaked has completely broken down.

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