Bruising – How to Prevent It, How to Treat It
Bruising: How to Prevent It, How to Treat It
Dr. M. Peirson, M.D., C.C.F.P.
ArtMed, The Art of Cosmetic Medicine
Bruising is very common after filler treatments. Some studies state that it occurs in roughly 19% – 24% of patients, while others have concluded that figure to be as high as 68%.
The areas where the skin shows the most visible signs of aging are also the most likely to bruise after filler injections, namely around the upper lip, under the eyes, and in the tear troughs. If you’re getting injectable treatments to reduce the appearance of nasolabial folds and marionette lines, take note that these areas are also prone to bruising.
Prior to filler treatments, refrain from taking the following supplements which are known for their anticoagulant effects:
- John’s Wort
- Ginkgo biloba
- Vitamin E
- Green tea
- Krill oil
- Flaxseed oils
- Fish oils and
How to Actively Prevent Bruising
Anecdotal evidence suggests eating fresh pineapple 2-3 times a day for the first two days prior to your injections will help prevent bruising.
Both before and after your procedure you can also take Arnica montana, a homeopathic remedy used to soothe sore muscles, treat bruises, and relieve post-procedure pain. Arnica montana comes in several forms, including pills and as a topical ointment. In the final two days leading up to your injections, taking Arnica pellets orally two or three times a day you will reduce or prevent bruises from forming afterward.
Post-procedure, you can continue taking Arnica tablets or apply an Arnica topical ointment, gel, or cream directly to the affected area. If bruises begin to appear continue applying Arnica in order to reduce swelling and minimize discoloration at the injection site.
After your procedure, you should avoid attending the gym or doing any rigorous exercise for 24-48 hours. Exercise increases your heart rate, blood pressure, and blood flow which can increase the extent of a bruise and delay recovery. For the first few days post injection opt for less strenuous forms of physical activity.
Choosing an expert, fully credentialed provider to perform your treatment is the key to ensuring the best possible outcome from filler injections and minimizing the risk of bruising. An expert injector may elect to apply an anesthetic cream, also known as numbing cream, to your face prior to injections so as to constrict the blood vessels and reduce the risk of bruising. Anesthetic creams can keep you more comfortable throughout the procedure. A skilled injector will also use techniques, materials and procedures specifically indicated to reduce the risk of bruising during treatment.
Occasionally post-procedure you may experience Tyndall effect. I Tyndall effect is a bluish discoloration that appears if hyaluronic acid fillers are injected too superficially into the skin. The filler is a clear gel, so light appears bluish when it reflects through it under skin.”
If you’re not sure whether you’re experiencing bruising or the Tyndall effect, it’s important to consult the professional who administered your injections. If the discoloration is a result of the Tyndall effect, you can either wait for the product to be absorbed naturally , or inject hyaluronidase into the affected area to dissolve the excess product.
Either way, it probably warrants a quick visit to your injector, as it can be hard to determine the cause of the discoloration on your own.
In the two weeks before your treatment, pay close attention to the medications you take, as they can have an impact on the way your body reacts to a filler treatment. Some medications, most notably blood thinners and anticoagulants, restrict your blood’s ability to clot and increase the likelihood of bruising.
Prior to treatment, it’s imperative to discontinue the use of NSAIDs such as Aspirin (ASA), Naproxen (Alene),Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin). Speak with your doctor before undergoing filler treatments if you have hemophilia, a liver disease, or any condition that requires you to take anticoagulants, including heparin or warfarin.
Certain foods can also influence the way your body reacts after receiving dermal filler injections. In the 1-2 days before your treatment, abstain from specific foods and drinks that have blood thinning properties which includes alcohol, red wine, fatty fish
Depending on your body’s natural tendency to bruise, it can take as long as two weeks after a filler treatment for the bruising to completely subside. While it’s not typically something to be too worried about, you still might want to consider taking a few steps to reduce the appearance of bruising after a dermal filler treatment.
Try not to touch the area directly within the first 6 hours, other than when applying cream or gel. Use soap and water to avoid bacteria getting into the injection site. Also, using a cold compress or cold packs will help to reduce swelling in the treated area, especially in the first 8 hours after facial injections. Avoid putting significant pressure on the areas that received injections. Do not massage the injected area unless specifically directed by your injector to do so. Following this advice will reduce the likelihood of further trauma to the blood vessels, which could result in additional swelling and bruising.
Some other natural options to manage bruising:
Anti-inflammatories (not to be taken until 48 hours post injection)
Place a cooled tea bag on a bruise and leave it there for an extended period to help it heal faster (the best type is comfrey if you have it).
Soak a cloth with white vinegar and place it on your bruise for up to 60 minutes (cut it with distilled water if you find the smell too strong).
Eat leafy green vegetables, or fresh pineapple (which are high in Vitamin K) the days before your filler appointment and you’ll be more resistant to bruising.
Place a cloth soaked with distilled witch-hazel to the area of the body that is swollen.
Always the old standby. Using them will reduce any redness and swelling.
Laser for Treatment of Bruising
If you’re experiencing significant bruising after a filler injection, you may benefit from a BBL treatment. BBL uses light to target specific areas of the skin with extreme bruising. The light is then converted into heat, which breaks up the blood clot comprising the bruise without disturbing the surrounding skin. This makes it easier for your body to quickly recover from the bruise. Most patients only require 1-2 treatments, but those with more severe or extensive bruising might need more. We offer complimentary BBL sessions to mitigate bruises post filler treatments at ArtMed. Please call 519-824-4567 to book your free bruise management BBL.
Of course, if you’re feeling self-conscious about the bruised areas, feel free to use makeup to cover them up as much as you can. Just be careful because you want to avoid pressing down too hard on the skin, which could further injure the area. Ask one of the staff at ArtMed to help you find the best camouflage colour concealer sample.