What to do about nosebleeds

Managing a nosebleed

Nosebleeds are common, particularly in children. And while they can usually be managed easily at home, sometimes they’re more severe.

If you or someone you care for has a nosebleed that lasts for more than 20 minutes, go to your nearest Accident and Emergency (A&E) department as soon as possible.

How to help prevent nosebleeds

  • If you need to blow your nose, do so as gently as possible.
  • Avoid picking your nose.
  • Try using vaporizers to keep the air humid or use saline (salt water) nasal spray if your nose is crusty and dry.
  • Use a head guard while playing contact sports, such as boxing or rugby.
  • Talk to your doctor if you are taking blood-thinning medications and have recurring nosebleeds.
  • Avoid overuse of nasal decongestants – always follow packet instructions.
  • Avoid smoking, alcohol and hot drinks – these expand the blood vessels in the lining of your nose.

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