Nosebleed in Children
Learn everything you need to know to help your child in Nosebleed cases.
Although nosebleeds are common in childhood, most parents panic. And yet Epistaxis, i.e. the opening of a child’s nose, is not as serious as… terrifying. On the one hand, this is due to the sight of blood, on the other hand to the fact that this can also cause vomiting (if the child swallows a quantity of blood).
It is almost certain that while your child is young, his nose will “open” at least once. To some children this happens often. Experts are reassuring though, saying nosebleeds in children are almost always less severe and less dangerous than those in adults. They just need calmness and proper handling.
Let’s see what can cause a nosebleed
As far as children are concerned, in 90% of cases the nose “opens” due to local reasons. And when we say local causes, we mean:
The nose, due to its anatomical position on the face, which protrudes, is more vulnerable to blows and injuries. When the nose hits somewhere, it can “open”. In fact, it’s the blood vessels that open inside of it. Injuries to the nose can even cause a fracture. The good thing about a broken nose is that α reassignment is usually not necessary if there is no bone displacement, and ονλυ antibiotics are given to treat the inflammation.
Colds and allergies
They cause swelling and inflammation in the mucous membrane of the nose, a spot with great sensitivity, and this results in bleeding.
If you live in an area with a dry climate or if the atmosphere in the house is dry, then the endothelium, i.e. the mucous membrane of the nose has a greater chance of drying out and creating crusts that peel off and cause bleeding.
Rhinitis, viral and bacterial as well as allergic
Rhinitis affects the mucous membrane of the nose with the known results (sensitivity, runny nose, sneezing, etc.) Both rhinitis and dryness are more common in the winter months.
Children’s nose picking, a habit unfortunately very contagious in the microcosm of children
It often results in the opening of the nose. The same generally happens due to the child’s preoccupation with the nose, for example when the child puts small objects, paper, etc. into the nostrils – a phenomenon that is often faced by doctors in hospital outpatient clinics and ENTs for Lilliputians.
Benign tumors or other formations such as polyps
In these cases, of course, which are rare, the nosebleed does not stop easily (it can even lead to the hospital) and is recurrent, that is, it manifests itself very often.
What not to do in case of a nosebleed:
- Do not apply any advice or practical prescription you are told.
- Don’t panic – at least try – because that way you will also scare your child who is justifiably scared of blood.
- Do not make the child lie down or bend his head back.
- Do not put gauze, tissues or other similar objects inside the nose to stop bleeding.
- After treating the bleeding do not let the child immediately return to normal activities. It is good not to be exposed for a couple of days to the sun, heat, intense play and movement.
What you should do:
- Keep calm and keep in mind that nose picking can be scary but it’s rarely serious.
- Keep the child sitting or standing with the head bent forward. It is important that he stays in this position so that he does not pass a quantity of blood to the esophagus and cause him to feel nauseous.
- If the child is old enough, have them blow their nose to dislodge any clots (if they stay in, the nose will bleed again).
- Rinse the nose with plenty of cold water.
- Pinch his nostrils or place an ice pack on the bridge of the nose (this will reflexively constrict the blood vessels, so the bleeding will stop).
- Put a small amount of cotton soaked in Vaseline on the tip of the nose (usually the front part of the septum is where the most nosebleeds occur, because that is where most of the blood vessels are concentrated) which will act as a hemostatic agent, i.e. to stop the bleeding.
- If after all these actions, the bleeding does not stop, and 20 minutes have passed, then a visit to an ENT specialist is necessary.
What will the ENT Doctor do?
He will proceed with nasal packing. That is, he will place a gauze in the shape of the nose inside the child’s foreskin (admittedly not a pleasant process for the little ones) deep enough to “pad” the point of bleeding. The gauze will remain in place for at least 24 hours and will be removed again by the doctor.
The other thing that the ENT can do is cauterization (chemical or electrical). In the first case, the doctor puts a small cotton ball with a substance, silver nitrate, locally in the area of the nose and the bleeding stops. In the other case, cauterization is done with diathermy on the child’s nose. In both cases, however, the procedure takes little time and is not painful (rather annoying) for the child, because it will be preceded by a local anesthetic injection.
Consult a doctor when:
- Nosebleed is persistent, meaning it occurs almost daily. At the age of 2-5 years, the phenomenon of… placing various objects inside the nostrils is common, and as expected, the foreign bodies cause frequent bleeding, until they are seen and removed.
- Bleeding seems to come from the mouth or blood is expelled by coughing or vomiting.
- The child is excessively pale.
- The child has frequent seizures and its nose is constantly stuffy. There may be some pathology in the nose neeing to be treated by the specialist.
By Panagiota Siganou
With the cooperation of the surgeon-otolaryngologist,
doctor of the ENT Department of the IASO maternity hospital
Mrs. Eleni D. Peraki