We all get a bruise from time to time -- maybe you walked into the doorjamb in the middle of the night or tripped over the dog on your morning walk. Most aren’t anything to worry about and heal on their own. Others can be a sign of something more serious. It’s a good to know the difference.
Why Do They Happen?
A bruise shows up when an injury makes small blood vessels under your skin bleed. Your skin isn’t broken, so the blood doesn’t have anywhere to go. It pools and forms clots and changes the color of the skin above the injury. Harder blows tend to cause bigger bruises -- also called contusions. They may be tender or hurt badly.
Types of Bruises
A flat, purple bruise that happens when blood leaks into the top layers of your skin is called an ecchymosis. A black eye, or “shiner,” is an example of this kind of bruise. A hematoma happens when clotted blood forms a lump under your skin. The area is usually swollen, raised, or painful. A “goose egg” on your head is one e…