This article is co-written by Julia Bowlin, MD. Dr. Bowlin is a family medicine specialist based in Ohio. She graduated from the Bunshoft School of Medicine at Wright University in 1993.
The number of sources used in this article is 17. You will find a list of them at the bottom of the page.
Epistaxis often occurs unexpectedly. Sometimes this is due to inhalation of dry air for a long time. Dry mucous membrane is more easily injured. Epistaxis occurs as a result of damage to the blood vessels of the nasal mucosa. Most nosebleeds occur in the front of the nasal septum - the tissue that separates the two sides of the nose. Often nosebleeds occur against a cold, acute sinusitis, allergic rhinitis, hypertension, or as a result of a bleeding disorder. In most cases, you can deal with the problem yourself. After reading this article, you can stop nosebleeds without the help of a doctor.
A common cause is external trauma to the nose. There are a number of diseases against which frequent hemorrhages can occur. We list the possible etiological factors:
- Injuries leading to a violation of the integrity of the skin, soft tissues, capillaries, mucous membrane.
- Surgery, examinations through the nostrils using special tools.
- Ingestion of a foreign body into the nostril. First aid for nosebleeds in this case is carried out after removing the item.
- Inflammation of the upper respiratory tract, in which the mucous membrane is irritated and swollen.
- Strong and regular blowing of the nose.
- Excessive or prolonged use of vasoconstrictor drugs (sprays, drops).
- Frequent inhalation due to professional activity of too cold or hot, dry air.
- Anomalies in the structure of the nose.
- The appearance of neoplasms.
- Bad habits, for example, regular inhalation of narcotic drugs in the form of powder through the nose.
If we talk about systemic causes requiring first aid for nosebleeds, these include chronic diseases (for example, high blood pressure). This also includes poor blood coagulability, excessive fragility of capillaries, vitamin deficiency, and high body temperature.
Emergency measures for nosebleeds
What to do with nosebleeds? First of all, we must remember that in no case should panic. This threatens to increase blood pressure and worsen the situation, which is difficult to fix later.
The patient should take a comfortable sitting position and tilt his head forward. It is necessary to breathe deeply with your mouth, it is advisable to unfasten the upper buttons and remove the belt, if any. This will help ensure good oxygen access to the lungs and activates blood coagulation.
How to stop nosebleeds at home? One of the important stages is the application of cold on the nose bridge. It could be an ice pack or a piece of cotton dipped in ice water. You can use other improvised means, for example, any frozen vegetables, having previously wrapped them in a cloth so as not to freeze the skin. You need to apply cold no longer than 15-20 minutes. This should be enough to narrow the blood vessels and stop the bleeding.
If there is blood from the nose, you need to apply a warm heating pad to the patient’s legs or place them in a basin with hot water - this activates blood circulation in the lower extremities, which has a beneficial effect on the redistribution of blood in the human body and helps stop nosebleeds.
The wings of the nose need to be squeezed with your fingers for several minutes to squeeze the vessels. Hydrogen peroxide will also help.
What measures to take
Epistaxis can cause a number of complications, so it is important to know how to stop nosebleeds at home. Adhering to certain rules, it is possible in a short time to eliminate the violation of the organ of smell. We list the procedure:
- The first thing to do is fix the head in the correct and comfortable position. It should not be thrown back, although among the people it is considered correct. With the abduction of the head, the situation only worsens, because it creates the appearance of stopping blood secretions. In fact, hemorrhagic secretions flow down the back wall of the nasopharynx. From there enter the respiratory tract or esophagus. Often, all this is accompanied by vomiting or severe coughing. And the amount of blood that got into the digestive tract, it is impossible to determine. With the appearance of epistaxis, first aid will be the correct position of the person on the chair. The head should be slightly bent and extended forward. - so the victim will not be able to choke on the fluid released.
- Neatly pressed to the nose bridge bleeding nostril. With strong pressure, the weakened capillaries are even more damaged, which leads to a deterioration in the general condition of the patient.
- Severe bleeding from the nose continues - how to stop quickly and effectively? It is simply impossible to help at home without a cold compress applied to the nose. It is cold that acts on the principle of a vasoconstrictor drug. Any frozen item pre-wrapped in a towel, a napkin soaked in water, etc. will do. A cool compress for the neck will also be appropriate - this reduces blood pressure. If after 15-20 minutes there have been no changes for the better, you need to call an ambulance or go to a medical facility yourself.
- As a first aid for nosebleeds, it is worth considering contrast baths that help lower blood pressure. The victim’s hands are placed in a container of warm water, while his legs are lowered into the cool. The temperature difference provides the outflow of blood, against which the epistaxis stops.
The provision of emergency care for nosebleeds involves the use of vasoconstrictor drops. However, this method is applicable with a slight release of fluid. A pharmaceutical agent is impregnated with a tampon and placed in the nasal cavity for 20-30 minutes. After this time, the turunda is pulled out. Sudden movements are unacceptable - this can lead to relapse. Instead of drops, it is allowed to use hydrogen peroxide.
If a person at least periodically encounters nosebleeds, a hemostatic sponge must be present at home. With epistaxis, a small part of such a product is carefully placed in a bleeding nostril and clamped with a finger. After 2-3 minutes, the person's condition should normalize.
Ease of use of such a sponge is that it dissolves on its own and does not have to be removed. The active components that impregnate the product contribute to a quick recovery. The emergency care provided for nosebleeds in this way is really effective.
Drugs to stop bleeding
How to stop blood from the nose of an adult if there is no positive dynamics using standard methods? In this case, the use of certain medications is indicated that can narrow blood vessels, accelerate coagulation processes and have other beneficial effects:
- The main drug that is used to stop nosebleeds at home is hydrogen peroxide (3%). Collect the drug in a small container, moisten a cotton-gauze swab in the solution and enter deep into the nasal cavity. Additionally, you can squeeze the wings of the nose with your fingers. Due to this, blood stops faster, because blood vessels are constricted. The duration of use is 15-20 minutes. After this, the swab should be removed, because if the blood stops, the villi will dry to the mucous membrane, and removing them will be problematic. Use hydrogen peroxide with caution.
- Vasoconstrictor drops. If hydrogen peroxide did not help, you can stop bleeding with drugs that can narrow the small vessels of the nasal mucosa. To do this, 1-2 drops of Naphthyzin, Galazolin, Rinazolin, Sanorin or another drug with similar properties should be injected into each nostril. But they must be used with caution.
- How to stop nosebleeds in an adult? The real salvation will be the use of Aminocaproic acid. It is advisable to use this tool on the recommendation of a doctor, especially if a similar problem recurs periodically. The drug belongs to the group of antihemorrhagic drugs and is intended for intravenous administration. But to make such an injection on your own is impossible, therefore, the medicine can be used in another way: inject a few drops into each nostril. After that, the blood should stop.
- How to stop severe nosebleeds? For this purpose, hemostatic drugs can be used. An effective remedy Dicinon, which is available in 2 dosage forms - tablets and solution for injection. With severe bleeding, the drug is used not only for emergency care, but also for several days after eliminating the main problem. However, this can only be done by agreement with the doctor, so as not to cause adverse reactions and not harm the body.
- Stopping bleeding is carried out with the use of Vikasol. But the tool is not intended for emergency care, since the therapeutic effect of its use appears after 12 hours. The need for its appointment occurs with prolonged bleeding. Without agreement with a doctor, it can not be used.
- If blood flows from the nose, you can use special hemostatic sponges. Most often, these funds are used for children, but they are quite suitable for adults. Hemostatic sponges have a unique ability to dissolve independently, so there is no need to remove them from the nasal passages. This is their convenience when using when a problem occurs.
What to do with bleeding caused by high blood pressure? In this case, it is advisable to use antihypertensive drugs with further consultation of a specialist. With bleeding, it is necessary to remove the cause of its occurrence, using drugs that lower blood pressure, thereby reducing the load on the vessels. With pressure, a person should strictly adhere to the doctor’s recommendations and take all prescribed drugs strictly according to the treatment regimen. Of the antihypertensive drugs, clonidine, Corinfar, Dibazole, Magnesium Sulfate, etc. are used. It is necessary to reduce the pressure, but this must be done under the supervision of a doctor.
If nosebleeds occur, what should I do to quickly stop it? You can use folk remedies that have been tested for centuries. Many plants have a hemostatic effect. Juice, decoctions and infusions based on them are used for local and internal use. How to stop bleeding? The following remedies may help:
- Quick results are easy to achieve with nettle juice by squeezing it from a fresh plant. Soak cotton pads with juice and insert into the problematic nasal passage. The duration of use is 10-15 minutes. If necessary, repeat the procedure using new nasal swabs. It has been used since time immemorial and is nowadays popular as the most effective hemostatic.
- How to quickly stop the blood? A yarrow will have a good effect. The plant should be washed under running water and passed through a meat grinder, squeeze the juice and inject 5-7 drops of liquid into each nasal passage.
- Lemon juice has a positive effect. But it can not be used in its pure form, because you can get a burn of the mucous membrane. Juice is diluted with boiled water in a ratio of 1: 2.
- Aloe is also used in a similar way. For this, it is advisable to use an adult plant that has reached 3 years of age.
- So that blood does not flow, you can use comfrey broth: 1 tbsp. l dry raw materials pour 1 cup boiling water, insist, strain and drip into both nostrils.
What can not be done
With frequent nosebleeds, the patient should know what should be avoided so as not to cause serious complications, the consequences of which will be very difficult and sometimes impossible to eliminate. Keep in mind the following:
- The main rule: when bleeding from the nose, a person should never occupy a horizontal position and throw his head back, although this is what the bulk of people do when a problem occurs. As a result of this, the blood does not go outside, but enters the back wall of the pharynx and further into the stomach. This threatens to cause vomiting of blood. The entry of blood from the nose into the respiratory throat can provoke the development of pneumonia.
- After stabilization, you can not blow your nose for 10-12 hours, so as not to provoke a clot to break off and the resumption of bleeding. During the day, you must stop drinking coffee or strong tea, because caffeine and other substances that make up them can cause a sharp jump in blood pressure, and this can provoke new bleeding. Also, some elements from coffee and tea reduce blood coagulation and interfere with the rapid formation of a clot.
If the blood from the nose does not stop flowing for 30-40 minutes, you need to call an ambulance. The doctor will make a tamponade of the nose and will be able to prevent severe blood loss. After stabilization of the condition, it is necessary to consult an otolaryngologist, therapist and other specialists to find the cause of bleeding and eliminate it.
You need to know how to stop nosebleeds at home so that there are no serious complications.
What to do is prohibited
There are actions that carry potential harm. If a person has nosebleeds, it is unacceptable:
- Throwing the head back, which contributes to the rapid entry of blood into the esophagus and, accordingly, into the stomach.
- It is not recommended to blow your nose before stopping the bleeding. Otherwise, a newly formed clot will come off, blocking the lumen of a bleeding vessel.
- It is not necessary to cook cotton swabs at home. The fibers of this material adhere to the mucous membrane. Removing the product can damage fragile vessels.
- In no case should you use immediately after stopping the release of blood treatment drops of any nature. Drugs provoke a vomiting and swallowing reflex, which can interfere with the normal formation of a blood clot.
How to handle young patients with epistaxis
Children are mobile and active, and their developing vessels, capillaries are prone to rupture. Therefore, it is often in young talents that blood comes from the nose. Often in such situations, there is a general family panic. Each parent must know how first aid is provided for nosebleeds in children. The following actions are carried out:
1. The baby should completely calm down, becauseexcessive nervousness only exacerbates what happened.
2. Explain to the victim that you can’t move your nose, blow your nose. It is necessary to breathe through the mouth and gently press the nostrils to the septum just below the bridge of the nose.
3. When the liquid ceases to stand out, the nose inside should be treated with petroleum jelly.
4. The next step is to contact a doctor and a detailed examination. Prolonged and regular bleeding weaken the immune system, contribute to the development of anemia. Even isolated cases of such a malfunction in the body can indicate possible violations of the heart, liver, and kidneys.
That is why with nosebleeds, first aid is important, but only if, after its provision, the victim is sent to a medical facility for examination.
Mandatory medical visit
Properly performed first aid for nosebleeds usually stabilizes the general condition of a person. Is it necessary to visit a doctor in this case? You should contact the hospital in the following cases:
- Epistaxis is a consequence of diabetes mellitus, poor blood coagulation, and high blood pressure.
- Regular use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (ibuprofen, nimesulide, diclofenac), anticoagulants (heparin, warfarin), antiplatelet agents (aspirin, clopidogrel).
- Abundant bloody vomiting as a result of involuntary entry of blood from the nose into the stomach in large quantities.
- Frequent syncope.
- Regular (more than 3-4 times a month) nosebleeds.
With nosebleeds, how to stop them as quickly as possible and provide the necessary assistance to the patient? Adhering to simple, but consistent rules, each person will cope with epistaxis. The main thing is not to panic, understand the possible causes of nosebleeds and act quickly and consistently.