Nose and Sinus

Main Content

Nosebleeds: Treatment and Prevention

Treatment:

  1. Stay calm.
  2. Sit down and lean the head slightly forward (so that the blood doesn't drip down the back of the throat and cause an upset stomach).
  3. Use your thumb and index finger to firmly squeeze the entire SOFT part of the nose for AT LEAST 5 minutes. Time yourself to make sure that the nose is squeezed constantly for the full 5 minutes. If it is still bleeding, squeeze for another 5 minutes.
  4. Optional: Place an ice pack across the nose.

If the nose continues to bleed:

  1. Blow the nose to remove the blood clots.
  2. Spray each nostril 2 times with an over-the-counter decongestant spray such as Afrin (store brand is also fine).
  3. Squeeze the nose an additional 5-10 minutes.
  4. If you can’t get the bleeding to stop, call your doctor or go to the emergency room.
Alternatives:

There is an over the counter product called Nosebleed QR that may be of benefit to patients with frequent nosebleeds who need help stopping an active nosebleed. This should not be considered an endorsement of any particular product, but it may be helpful to you.

Prevention:

To prevent nosebleeds:

  1. Gently apply a thin layer of petroleum jelly (Vaseline) to each nostril 1-2 times a day as directed for 2 weeks. You can also use salt water nose spray, salt water jelly, or K-Y jelly 2-4 times a day, in addition to the above, if you feel the need for additional moisturization or need something less oily for the long term.
  2. Do not pick your nose.
  3. Do not blow your nose too hard.
For Questions or Emergency Care:
Call the office at 601-984-5160. You may need to speak with the doctor on-call.

Printable PDF