When the air gets cold and dry, like in winter time, it makes nosebleeds more likely. Children are the most susceptible. Fortunately, there are easy tips for handling and even preventing your child's nosebleeds.
In most cases, a nosebleed occurs because the tiny vessels inside the nose have broken. This type of nosebleed, called an anterior nosebleed, occurs because the blood flows out of the front (or anterior) part of the nose.
These types of nosebleeds are usually not serious and generally stop by themselves or require only simple steps to stop the bleeding. They rarely require medical attention. Anterior nosebleeds are almost always a result of an irritation inside the nose caused by several factors, including:
Posterior nosebleeds, on the other hand, are much less common and occur when the blood flow comes from deep inside the nasal cavity and moves down the back (or posterior) of the mouth and throat. They are usually a sign of a more serious underlying medical condition, such as high blood pressure, hemophilia, other bleeding disorders, or a nasal tumor. Blood-thinning medications can also cause posterior nosebleeds.
Children and teenagers are most susceptible to anterior nosebleeds, but adults can experience them as well.
If your child has a nosebleed that does not stop quickly take the following steps, as recommends by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP):
A child with severe or recurrent bleeding, or bleeding from both nostrils, should be evaluated by a pediatrician and, if necessary, an ear-nose-throat specialist.
When the bleeding has stopped, children should keep their heads elevated and avoid heavy exertion and nose-blowing for at least an hour.
There are several steps you can take to prevent your child from getting anterior nosebleeds, including:
American Academy of Otolaryngology
American Academy of Pediatrics
Canadian Family Physician
Chronic nosebleeds: what to do. Healthy Children—American Academy of Pediatrics website. Available at: http://www.healthychildren.org/English/health-issues/conditions/ear-nose-throat/Pages/Chronic-Nosebleeds-What-To-Do.aspx. Updated July 9, 2013. Accessed April 18, 2014.
Nosebleed. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated January 15, 2013. Accessed April 18, 2014.
Nosebleeds. Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/nosebleeds.html. Updated April 2014. Accessed April 18, 2014.
Last reviewed April 2014 by Michael Woods, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
Copyright © 2012 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.
What can we help you find?close ×