Nosebleed FAQ

What is a nosebleed?

A nosebleed is a hemorrhage within the nasal cavity. There are two types of nosebleeds , the anterior affecting the front of the nose, and the posterior affecting the back.


What is the difference between an anterior nosebleed and a posterior nosebleed?

In an anterior nosebleed, the small blood vessels lining the wall of the nostril rupture. In a posterior nosebleed, the artery running at the back of the nasal cavity ruptures causing significant bleeding.


Who gets nosebleeds?

Nosebleeds are most common in children ages 2-10 and in adults 50-80. Pregnant women also get nosebleeds due to increased blood flow in their bodies. Elderly people are prone to posterior nosebleeds. While nosebleeds are commonly found in some more than others, no one is exempt from getting a nosebleed now and then.


What causes nosebleed?

Cold, dry air, found during winter or in cold climate areas, dries out the nasal passages and puts strain on the interior membrane. Using dry heat in the house during winter can also add to the irritation. Trauma, such as a blow to the face,  picking,  or objects in your nose can damage the nasal cavity and cause a hemorrhage.


Can you have a nosebleed from both nostrils?

While it is possible to bleed in nostrils simultaneously, it is not likely.


Why would I have blood coming from both nostrils?

When a patient gets a nosebleed, bleeding can fill the back of the nasal cavity and spill over into the other nostril. The nasopharynx is a gap within the construction of the nasal cavity, which connects the two nostrils together. Once the blood has flowed into the other nostril, it will start to exit.


Is it normal to cough up blood when experiencing a nosebleed?

Yes. Because of the layout of our respiratory system, heavy nosebleeds can often fill up the nasal cavity and then begin to run down the back of our throat.  With blood flowing down the esophagus it can also be commonplace for some blood to enter into the stomach. Blood in the stomach can induce vomiting as well.


How can I tell if I am having excessive blood loss?

Excessive blood loss does not occur often with nosebleeds. Occasionally a patient of a posterior nosebleed may run into this problem, but even a heavy nosebleed will usually stop without problem. The symptoms of excessive blood loss include dizziness, light-headedness, confusion, and fainting.


Are there other health factors that contribute to nosebleeds?

Underlying diseases can contribute to nosebleeds. While not a direct cause of irritation, hemophelia, which makes blood unable to clot, can induce a nosebleed from even a minute irritation. Patients on blood thinners may experience nosebleeds as well, for reasons mimicking those of hemophelia. High blood pressure can contribute to the intensity of a nosebleed but are rarely the cause of them.


How can I stop a nosebleed?

First, be calm. Next sit up straight and then lean forward. Pinch your nose together for a minimum of 10 minutes, depending on severity of the bleeding. Do not lean back as that can send blood down your throat and into your stomach, causing vomiting. Give your nose some time to clot and then clean up.


Nosebleeds are not as scary as they appear. There are many home remedies to stop bleeding, and many products on the market that can help prevent nosebleeds, or get them to stop. Nasalcease are convenient and effective nasal plugs, designed to help blood clot quickly and discreetly.

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