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Get a bloody nose almost every day? Here's what to do

Get a bloody nose almost every day? Here's what to do

Many people know how to manage a bloody nose, which in most cases is a minor nuisance, but if it lasts for an extended period without stopping or happens more frequently on a regular basis, more needs to be done than just pinching the nose. If you repeatedly get a bloody nose, here are a few things to consider.


Do

Do apply direct pressure

The same rules apply here as for simple nosebleed; direct pressure is the first step. This is your first defense in stopping the bleeding. Apply pressure below the bridge of the nose and occlude the affected nostril.

Do seek medical attention

If the nosebleeds stop with direct pressure, follow up with your primary care physician, who may consider a number of labs ranging from a complete blood count to a measure of your coagulation factors. They may also have you follow up with an ear, nose, and throat specialist to examine the nasal cavity and rule out any vascular abnormalities or hemangiomas, which are an overgrowth of blood vessels or other lesions.

Do go to the ER when it doesn't stop

It is important to seek help if you experience a bloody nose that does not stop bleeding. Medical professionals have more options at their disposal, including nasal sprays, nasal balloons, or nasal tampons to provide more persistent pressure and tamponade or stop the bleeding with more direct pressure.

Do consider what medications you are taking

Some medications like blood thinners may cause interactions and enhance the effects of certain medications or alter the way they are metabolized. A medical history of bleeding disorders like hemophilia or Factor V leiden deficiency or difficulties stopping bleeding when cut or injured, can also contribute to bloody noses. Consider this when meeting with a doctor. Having your most current medication list is helpful for any visit with your doctor but is particularly important when trying to identify the underlying causes of a problem like this.

Do practice homecare to help stop the bleeding

Certain homecare techniques can help prevent and stop nose bleeds from happening so frequently. If your house is dry, try using a humidifier to help make the air less dry. When your nose is dry, use petroleum jelly on the inside of your nose. Also, try spraying nasal spray, such as Afrin, before applying pressure to the nose to help stop it from bleeding.


Don't

Do not ignore the recurrent nosebleed

As mentioned above, the recurrent nosebleeds could be a sign of an underlying medical problem like hypertension or atherosclerosis. Make sure to see a professional as to why the persistent nosebleeds occur.

Do not pick your nose

Avoid causing additional trauma to your nose. This will help prevent nosebleeds from developing and prevent injury to the inner nasal mucosa and the delicate superficial blood vessels of the nose.

Do not sniff or blow your nose after a nosebleed

Sniffing or forceful blowing of the nose after a nosebleed can lead to repeat injury or nosebleed.

Do not attempt to insert any objects of your own to stop the bleeding

Do not attempt to insert any objects on your own to stop the bleeding. Nasal tampons or balloons should be inserted by a medical professional, since there is a risk of further injury and infection.


Summary
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For the most part, nosebleeds can be a minor occurrence, but if they happen repeatedly, more needs to be done to find out why they are happening and what can be done to make them stop. Consider your medical history and current medications when consulting with a physician.


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Photo Credits: B-D-S/bigstock.com; Check Man, Cross Man and Jump Man © ioannis kounadeas - Fotolia.com

Justin C. Young, M.D.Doctor

Justin C. Young, M.D. is a physician from Atlanta, who now lives in Los Angeles. He is a 2002 graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill and former Student Body President. He graduated from Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tenn., in 2008 and started initi...

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