As a mother myself, it worries me to see bruises on my children. All the more if I have no idea what causes them. I am just glad that when I asked our paediatrician about those bruises, she says that it is sometimes normal for children to have them especially if they are very active.
Bruises are bluish-purple spots you see on your child’s skin, which turn into a yellow- greenish or brown color days after and lasting about a week or two. These spots are caused by damaged blood vessels bleeding under the skin.
There are many things that can cause bruises on children. Now, should unexplained bruising concern us parents? Here are some causes that we need to look into(http://www.unexplainedbruising.net):
1. Falls, Bumps & Injuries – These are common causes of bruises on children. Kids, in general, are very active. My kids love to climb trees, run around playing ball, tag or hide-and-seek that accidental stumbling or bumping into things are likely bound to happen. There would be instances when I would notice a bruise and ask them about it, and they don’t even remember. All they know was they were having a great time playing! So, how would we know if it is something serious?
Bruises from accidents like these are usually located at the shin, legs, knees or oftentimes, the forehead. As long as the bruise is flat and not larger than a size of a quarter, we have nothing to worry about.
2. Physical Abuse -These kinds of bruises are a serious problem that needs attention. If the bruises are severe and are on unusual locations such as the back, the neck, upper arms, buttocks, thighs, ears, face or even in the genitalia, or has a distinct mark or shape, like a hanger, a belt, or a stick, then your child might be physically abused. It is important to call the attention of authorities immediately for this case.
3. Other underlying health conditions – if your child has had unexplained bruising more often than he or she normally had before, it is best to consult your doctor. It could be a symptom of an underlying illness such as leukemia, hemophilia, Vitamin K deficiency, Von Willebrand disease, cancer or other related conditions.
Though bruises eventually heal up on their own, they would heal more quickly and reduce the swelling with the help of an ice or any bag of frozen vegetable wrapped in a clean cloth and placing it over the bruise. After two days, apply hot compress two to three times a day for 10 minutes. Taking medications like Ibuprofen or aspirin can worsen and prolong the clot.
Children will always like to play. It’s in their nature. They would always enjoy running, jumping, climbing and discovering things. Therefore, it is up to us, as parents, to take some precautionary measures such as advising your child to slow down and always be careful. Also keep an eye on them while playing. If you have a child who has the tendency to keep falling, let him or her use some elbow and knee pads and a helmet when playing sports. Remember, safety comes first. So keep safe!