Pin Me

What Causes Easy Bruising?

written by: DulceCorazon • edited by: Emma Lloyd • updated: 8/27/2010

Causes of bruising easily are usually related to aging. Older people are more prone to bruise easily because of their aging skin, decreasing body fat layer and weaker capillaries.

  • slide 1 of 7

    Overview

    When blood capillaries get damaged by trauma or any other cause of internal bleeding, blood escapes into the surrounding area, often leaving a temporary discoloration which appears reddish-purple in the skin. This is what we call a bruise. Most people usually get bruises from blunt trauma, but there are some individuals who bruise easily even without experiencing any trauma. Here are several causes of bruising easily.

  • slide 2 of 7

    Inadequate Layer of Fat

    If someone does not have an adequate amount of body fat, this can contribute to capillaries getting damaged easily, hence the frequent bruising. Body fat provides a layer of protection from trauma and when this layer thins out, this results in less material which comes between outside objects and the capillaries. The slightest bump of the body against an object can cause bruising among people who do not have an adequate layer of body fat. This is the most common cause of easy bruising in the very young or very old. These are ages where a person's body fat is just starting to develop or is already thinning out.

  • slide 3 of 7

    Thinning Skin

    An individual with adequate layer of body fat may still bruise easily, especially if he has a thin layer of skin. This is commonly seen among aging people. Human skin eventually thins out as a person grows older, and this makes the muscles, bones and capillaries more vulnerable to physical trauma. A thin skin combined with a thin layer of body fat often makes blood vessels extremely prone to breakage and damage, causing a person to bruise easily even with the most minor of traumas.

  • slide 4 of 7

    Aging Capillaries

    Again, aging plays a pivotal role in bruising easily by way of weakening capillaries. As a person ages, his body parts, including the capillaries, become weaker, more fragile and more vulnerable to damage. As blood capillaries grow older, they become prone to breaking easily, therefore causing an easy escape for blood that will easily flow to the surrounding tissues.

  • slide 5 of 7

    Deficiency in Nutrients

    One of the most common causes of bruising easily is the lack of nutrients in a person's body like certain vitamins, zinc and bioflavonoids. The vitamin deficiency that contributes most in bruising easily is the deficiency in Vitamin C. This can be caused by smoking, stress, depression, lack of fruits and vegetables, pollutants and being angry all the time. If the body lacks certain nutrients, it will cause the blood vessels to become weak and prone to damage, therefore bruising easily.

  • slide 6 of 7

    Medications

    Intake of medications like blood thinning agents often reduces the ability of the blood to clot. When bleeding due to damage in the capillaries occur, blood may not clot quickly, thus allowing some blood to seep into the tissues and cause bruise formation.

  • slide 7 of 7

    References

    Mayo Clinic: Easy Bruising, Common as you Age

    MedicineNet.com: Easy Bruising Symptoms