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Quick reference medical handouts used by Pediatric offices


Management of Nosebleeds


Home Treatment for a Nosebleed

  • Stay calm in order to keep your child calm. Crying and sniffling can prolong the bleeding. Nosebleeds almost always look much worse than they really are and most can be successfully treated at home.

  • Immediately apply direct pressure by pinching the soft parts of the child’s nose together while pressing firmly toward the face. Hold this position for at least 10 minutes (use a timer) without releasing the pressure to check if the bleeding has stopped. This maneuver alone will stop over 90 percent of children’s nosebleeds. If the bleeding does not stop after 10 minutes, reposition the fingers and reapply pressure for another 10 minutes.

  • Sucking on an ice cube or popsicle will help constrict nasal blood vessels and is a good distraction for the child.

  • Have a basin available so your child can spit out any blood that drains into the throat. Swallowed blood is irritating to the stomach.

  • Have the child sit up straight and lean forward to prevent blood from going down the back of the throat and being swallowed. Have the child spit out the blood. If blood is swallowed, the child may vomit either bloody or coffee ground material or pass a dark, tarry stool.

  • Do not apply ice to the back of the neck, as this will not help.

  • Encourage your child not to pick or blow their nose.

  • Do not stuff tissue or other materials into the nose to stop the bleeding.

     

  • Stop use of any medicated nasal spray.

  • Note that nosebleeds may reoccur for several days until the scab has healed.

     

    As a reminder, this information should not be relied on as medical advice and is not intended to replace the advice of your child’s pediatrician. Please read our full disclaimer.

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