Could Your Bruise Be A Result Of The Sun?

Contrary to popular belief, a bruise can emerge as a result of more than just physical injury. In some cases, bruises can form without any physical contact whatsoever (via Medical News Today). Instead, this type of bruising takes place in response to sun poisoning or damage.

If you've noticed the development of red-purple bruises with asymmetrical edges forming along the skin's surface, you may be experiencing solar purpura bruising (via Osmosis). Usually between 4 and 10 millimeters long, these flat bruises often emerge on the hands, legs, and arms — as these regions generally receive greater amounts of sunlight (via Verywell Health). Sometimes referred to as senile purpura, this skin condition primarily affects those 50 years of age and older due to the progressive weakening of skin and blood vessels as we age.

Just like any other bruise, these spots are a result of blood vessel leakage under the skin. Unlike other bruises, however, solar purpura bruises are not tender to the touch, reports Osmosis.

How to reduce your risk for solar purpura bruising

Solar purpura bruises are generally not cause for concern and usually heal on their own within one to three weeks' time (via Osmosis). The condition is primarily diagnosed through a physical examination and assessment of the patient's health history and symptoms, although additional tests such as blood and urine tests are sometimes used to rule out any related health conditions, per Medical News Today.

While we naturally become more prone to bruising as we grow older, protecting ourselves from sun damage that could further increase our risk for bruises is key. To reduce one's chances of developing solar purpura, experts at Alberta Health advise the everyday use of broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. In addition, wear protective clothing over areas of the body that are most susceptible to sun exposure. Side effects of aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen include an increased risk for bleeding, so be sure to first consult with your doctor regarding safe usage of any medications or if bruising worsens.