Application of ice, intake of pain killers and use of micro current therapy are some of the treatment methods suggested to heal bruised bones.
The term ‘bruised bones’ describes a condition in which the periosteum, a dense fibrous tissue coating the surface of the bones gets injured. Even though the actual bone does not get damaged, many consider it as a precursor to fracture. The injury can trigger severe bleeding below the periosteum and cause excruciating pain in the affected area. Blood vessels passing through the periosteum supply essential nutrients to the bones. Hence, damage to the periosteum can restrict the blood circulation if the bleeding doesn’t stop. A trauma in which the bone is subjected to violent impact leads to bruised bones. Such kind of injuries are common in people playing football and rugby.
Application of ice is one of the best home remedies that works to alleviate discomfort associated with bone bruise. Most patients experience relief from pain and swelling after applying ice. Directly applying the ice on the affected area can damage the superficial skin. Hence, firstly cover it with a thin cloth and then massage it on the painful site. An ice massage on the bruised bones for 5-10 minutes many times in a day works to reduce pain. This method of rubbing ice on the injured area can definitely help to shorten the healing time.
Use of non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs is yet another proven remedy that not only reduces the pain but also the inflammation associated with bruised bones. Whether it is bruised bone in the foot or knee, one can certainly depend on NSAIDS to reduce the pain. NSAIDS such as aspirin, acetaminophen (Tylenol) and ibuprofen are often recommended to manage bruised bone pain.
Avoid Strenuous Activities
Activities that put too much weight on the bruised bone have to be avoided. In case, the bruised bone is located in the knee, other than walking one must not do any other activity like running and climbing. If the bruised bone is in the elbow, one should avoid bending it. Do not be in a hurry to get back to your daily routine as straining the bruised bone in elbow area frequently can increase the risk of fracture. So, keeping the bone bruised area from any kind of stressful activity is necessary to speed up healing.
Yet another way to support the injured tissue, reduce the swelling and the pain is to use kinesio taping. This is a cotton tape placed on the stretch skin. The tape sticks on the applied area and provides relief from pain and inflammation related to edema. Talk to a certified kinesio taping practitioner (CKTP) before using it for bruised bones.
Avoid Chewing Tobacco
Tobacco products are loaded with nicotine, a substance that can slow down healing. This is because nicotine cuts down oxygen rich blood flow to the injured site. The decreased blood circulation delays the healing time and it may take several months before one completely recovers from the injury. So, the habit of smoking and chewing tobacco needs to be stopped until the bruised bone cures entirely.
Microcurrent therapy involves passing a very small ampere (amp) electric current through the damaged tissue. This method of introducing current helps to reduce pain and facilitate healing. As we all know, the human brain transmits electrical signals through the nerves to control bodily movement. This electrical activity of the body gets disturbed in the eventuality of an injury such as a bruised bone. Microcurrent therapy tries to mimic these electrical signals of the body, which helps to alleviate pain and inflammation.
Doctors may recommend certain supplements to speed up recovery. Various studies have shown that vitamin K supports bone health. It restricts calcium loss from bones and in fact increase the capacity of bones to absorb calcium. Thus, to improve bone strength in the damaged tissue, taking vitamin K supplements is a good option. Bromelain, an enzyme that naturally occurs in pineapple is also helpful to decrease inflammation. So taking bromelain supplements may also contribute to reduce swelling.
As aforementioned, adequate rest is important in the initial weeks to prevent injury from worsening. However, as the pain and the inflammation reduces, one should make an attempt to move the injured tissue through a range of movement. In order to regain original strength of the damaged tissue and the bone, doing certain set of exercises is recommended.
The healing time of bruised bones will depend upon a number of factors including how severe is the injury. Not limiting the activities can aggravate the condition and prolong the healing time. Depending upon the amount of damage caused to the bone, the healing time may vary from a few months to about a year.