Broken (fractured) or bruised ribs are usually caused by a fall, a blow to the chest or severe coughing. strong pain in your chest area, particularly when you breathe in. swelling or tenderness around the affected ribs. sometimes bruising on the skin.
How do you treat bruised ribs?
- take painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen – avoid taking ibuprofen for 48 hours after your injury as it may slow down healing.
- hold an ice pack (or bag of frozen peas in a tea towel) to the affected ribs regularly in the first few days to bring down swelling.
- rest and take time off work if you need to.
How long will it take to heal bruised ribs?
You can treat the symptoms of bruised ribs as outlined above, but the only thing that will really heal them is time. Take about 3-4 weeks to rest before getting back to work. Also remember to breathe as normally as possible. Shallow breaths can increase your risk of pneumonia.