Some individuals are prone to develop a recurrent bloody nose particularly during certain circumstances such as dry weather. There are a number of conditions or illnesses that increases the recurrence of a bloody nose.
Common causes of a recurrent bloody nose
- Dry mucous membranes due to lack of humidity in the air or dehydration
- Blowing of the nose too hard
- Frequent rubbing or picking of the nose
- Common cold or upper respiratory infections
The less common causes of a recurrent bloody nose include high blood pressure, trauma to the nose, certain medications that thin out the blood, presence of tumors in the nose or sinuses, diseases that disrupt the blood clotting, foreign object in the nose, hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia and sinus barotrauma.
It is important to note that children tend to experience frequent bloody noses than adults since they are more likely to rub or pick their noses. Oftentimes, there is an underlying reason for this such as allergies or irritation.
Remember that not all cases of bloody nose can be prevented, but if the individual experiences recurrent nose bleeding, there are considerations to bear in mind to reduce the severity or frequency.
- Use an over-the-counter nasal saline spray but be careful when using since the tip can damage the blood vessels or tissues within the nostrils that have scabbed over. The best way to avoid this is to avoid inserting the tip too far up the nose and try to angle the tip towards the center of the nose.
- Utilize a cool mist humidifier that should be positioned close to the bed while sleeping.
- A neti pot can be used but be careful while inserting the tip into the nostrils.
- If possible, avoid picking or rubbing the nose. The fingernails of children should be trimmed to reduce any damage they might do while picking at their nose.
- Encourage the individual to drink plenty of fluids
- The underlying condition such as allergies should be treated.
When to consult a doctor
The individual should be taken to the emergency department or call for emergency assistance if you cannot stop an active nose bleeding after 20 minutes or if the bleeding is severe.
A doctor should be consulted if the individual has recurrent nose bleeding that does not resolve despite measures to prevent it. The doctor can rule out underlying conditions such as abnormal growths or tumors or certain disorders that prevents the blood from clotting properly.
Treatment for a recurrent bloody nose
Proper management of the underlying cause of the bloody nose is the most effective way to prevent it from recurring. In some circumstances, this approach should be combined with other treatment options.
Even though there are limited studies on the treatment for recurrent nose bleeding, there are various treatment options being reviewed. Based on these studies, chemical-based cauterization or surgical ligation is more likely to prevent bloody noses from recurring on a long-term basis.