Are nose bleeds common?
Nose bleeds are common, most are mere nuisances; but some are quite frightening, and a few are even life threatening.
What are the types of nose bleeds?
1. Anterior Nosebleed : The nose bleed that comes from the front part of the nose and begins with a flow of blood out one or the other nostril if the patient is sitting up or standing.
2. Posterior Nosebleed : The nosebleed that comes from deep in the nose and flows down the back of the mouth and throat even if the patient is sitting up or standing.
If the patient is lying down, even the anterior nosebleeds can flow backwards especially if patient coughs or blow the nose.
Nevertheless, it is important to try to make the distinction since posterior nosebleeds are often more severe and almost always require the physician’s care. Posterior nosebleeds are more likely to occur in older people, persons with high blood pressure, and in cases of injury to the nose or face.
Nosebleeds in children are almost always of the anterior type. Anterior nosebleeds are common in dry climates or during the winter months when the dry air parches the nasal membranes so that they crust, crack, and bleed. This can be prevented by moisturizing the septum with Vaseline type ointment.
If the nosebleeds persist, you should see your doctor. The bleeding vessel can be cauterised in a simple outpatient procedure that may permanently solve the problem.
How to stop an Anterior Nosebleed?
If you or your child has an anterior nosebleed, you may be able to care for it yourself using the following steps.
1. Pinch all the soft part of the nose together between you thumb and two fingers.
2. Press firmly toward the face – compressing the pinched parts of the nose against the bones of the face.
3. Hold it for 5 minutes (timed by a clock).
4. Keep head higher than the level of the heart – sit up or lie with head elevated.
5. Apply ice (crushed in a plastic bag or washcloth) to nose and cheeks.
How to prevent Re-bleeding after bleeding has stopped?
6. Do not pick or blow nose (sniffing is all right).
7. Do not strain or bend down to lift anything heavy.
8. Keep head higher than the level of the heart.
What to do if Re-bleeding occurs ?
9. Clear nose of all blood cots by sniffing in forcefully.
10. Spray nose four times on both sides with decongestant spray (such as Aftin, Otivin)
11. Pinch and press nose into face again, as in steps 1-3 above.
12. See a doctor
When to call the doctor or go to a hospital Emergency room?
- If bleeding canot be stopped or keeps reappearing.
- If bleeding is rapid or if blood loss is large.
- If you feel weak or faint, presumably from blood loss
- If bleeding begins by going down the back of the throat rather than the front to the nose
- Book an appointment with HealthSense Specialist Dr. YT Pang to look at your ENT problems and get cured.