Bruises On Legs

Reasons You Get So Many Bruises on Your Legs

If you bruise easily, you probably notice many bruises on your legs.  Legs can bruise more easily than other parts of the body because of the sheer number of blood vessels running through the legs.  There’s also less skin to protect the legs from any kind of extreme contact.

Bruises are basically small ruptures of the blood vessels just under the surface of your skin.  They’re black and blue areas caused by blood leaking into the tissue under the skin.  It can take anywhere from two to four weeks for bruises to completely heal, and they usually change colors in the process, from a purplish tint, to a reddish one, and then yellowish when they’re close to healing.

The most common reason for bruises on your legs is blunt force trauma, which is not nearly as serious as it sounds.  Trauma can include any situation in which your leg was grabbed or hit roughly.  Sometimes children can even cause bruises on your legs if they play roughly on your lap.  In many cases you may not even know what caused the bruises on your legs. 

If the blood vessels in your legs become inflamed, you could also notice more bruises on your legs.  This condition is called vasculitis, and it can also cause a rash, fatigue, and changes in the way your legs feel.  Vasculitis can damage many parts of the body by decreasing blood supply to organs and causing blood clots, so it’s important to catch it early.  Vasculitis is very treatable, and sometimes it will correct itself.  In other cases doctors may prescribe an anti-inflammatory medication like corticosteroids. 

Malnutrition can also cause easy bruising.  Make sure you’re getting enough of the right vitamins.  Folic acid and vitamins B12, C, and K all contribute to the body’s ability to resist bruising. 

Bruises can also be explained by something as simple as the medication you’re taking.  Aspirin is known to increase bruising in patients, as are all types of blood thinners.  Doctors can adjust your medication to help you not bruise so easily.

Bruises are not usually anything to worry about, and they usually go away on their own, but sometimes bruises on your legs can be a symptom of a deeper problem.  For one, they can indicate a bleeding disorder.  If you have a bleeding disorder, it means there’s something wrong with your blood that keeps it from clotting.  Unexplained bruises on your legs can point to problems with platelets, which are the cells which help your blood clot, or other substances which aid in the clotting process.

Unexplained bruises can also be a sign of numerous other diseases which affect blood clotting.  Chronic inflammatory diseases like lupus can cause excess bruising if the blood is affected by the disease.

So how do you know if it’s time to call the doctor for excess bruising?  If the bruises on your legs are unusually large or very painful, you should have them checked out.  You should also see a doctor if you’ve never bruised very easily but suddenly experience a lot of bruises for no apparent reason.