First aid management of nose bleeding (Epistaxis)

Nose bleeding

Nose bleeding is common in children which is usually not serious and often a nuisance. It happens when one of the blood vessels in the lining of the nose bursts. Nosebleeds may be caused by infection, injury, allergic reaction, nose picking or an object being pushed into the nostril. Another name for nosebleed is epistaxis.

Management of nose bleeding

Reassure the person, especially children, as crying increases blood flow.

Sit upright and lean forward. By remaining upright, you reduce blood pressure in the veins of your nose. This discourages further nose bleeding. Sitting forward will help you avoid swallowing blood, which can irritate your stomach. Don’t lie down or tilt the head backward.

Pinch your nose. Use your thumb and index finger to pinch your nostrils shut just below the bone up against the face. Breathe through your mouth. Continue to pinch for 10 to 15 minutes. Pinching sends pressure to the bleeding point on the nasal septum and often stops the flow of blood.

If the nose bleeding continues after 10 to 15 minutes, repeat holding pressure for another 10 to 15 minutes. Avoid peeking at your nose. If the bleeding still continues, seek emergency care.

Loosen tight clothing around the neck. Place a cold cloth or cold pack over the person’s forehead and one around the neck, especially around the sides of the neck this reduces blood flow and further stops nose bleeding.

To prevent re-bleeding, don’t pick or blow your nose and don’t bend down for several hours after the bleeding episode. During this time remember to keep your head higher than the level of your heart. You can also gently apply some petroleum jelly to the inside of your nose using a cotton swab or your finger.

If re-bleeding occurs, blow out forcefully to clear your nose of blood clots. Then spray both sides of your nose with a decongestant nasal spray. Pinch your nose again as described above and call your doctor.

You should go to the doctor or a hospital emergency department.

If the bleeding does not stop after simple first aid management. It is important to find and treat the underlying cause of the bleeding.

About felclinic 593 Articles
Felix Ntifo is a Registered General Nurse who has so much passion to improve health care delivery. He founded FelClinic with the hope of making health information accessible to everyone who may not come in contact with him personally. "At we are very passionate about health and well-being of everyone. Our team is made up of professional doctors, nurses, midwives and lab technicians."

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