Frequent Nosebleeds in Children – Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, Tips

Our children are our primary responsibility and we want to keep them healthy and safe at any cost, whatsoever. As parents, we worry about their diet, their sleep, their growth, and every aspect of their development. We simply do not want our children to miss out on any enjoyment of life while seeing them develop every single day in a healthy and steady manner.

However, almost every child suffers minor ailments at some point or the other. While fevers and flu are normal ailments and can be taken care of easily, there are some ailments which do frighten us as parents. Some parents worry about frequent nosebleeds in children. It is important to understand the reasons and take suitable action in order to avoid such situations.

Types of Nosebleeds

Nosebleed ideally represents blood coming out of nose (from inside the nose). There are typically two types of nosebleeds

  • Anterior Nosebleeds – This is the most common form of nosebleed. In this case, Blood comes from the front of the nose. In such cases of bleeding, usually very small blood vessels or capillaries might sometimes break, thus causing nose bleeding.
  • Posterior Nosebleeds – In this kind of nose bleeding, blood comes from deep inside the nose. Sometimes, the blood flows down the throat (usually back of the throat) even when the person is sitting or standing. This type of nosebleed is observed mostly in adults and very rarely in children. Usually, adults suffering from very high blood pressure or those who have suffered nose or face injuries experience such nosebleeds.

Frequent Nosebleeds in Children Causes

Bleeding nose is a common ailment among children aged 3 to 10. At times, many parents complain about nosebleeds even among their toddlers especially during the night. Some of the major reasons for such nosebleeds include

  • Nose picking when done too severely
  • Dry Air or extremely dry climate (overheated indoors) which tend to make the nasal membrane dry and thus nasal crusts become itchy and get scratched or picked
  • The common cold which can irritate the nose lining and cause nose bleeding due to repeated blowing. Usually having a cold during the dry months of the winter becomes the perfect recipe for a nosebleed.
  • Allergies and sinusitis infection which cause itchy, stuffy, or a runny nose and where medicines have been prescribed can make the nose membrane dry, thus leading to nosebleeds
  • Injury especially around the nasal and facial area causing a bloody nose. In case the flow of blood cannot be stopped within ten minutes, immediate medical attention needs to be sought
  • Bacterial infection

There are several instances where parent complain that their small child usually below 3 years, say 2 year old child suffering from nosebleed while sleeping. Researches suggest that this might happen in case the child might have bumped his/her face or nose against something or some object. But parents need to be cautious about such issues and monitor the frequency of nosebleed or intensity of bleeding sincerely since such nosebleed can also indicate crucial hereditary disorder such as hemophilia or other grave diseases such as leukemia.

Children suffering from leukemia might experience frequent nosebleeds and they might bleed more than expected after a minor injury or even nosebleed. Nosebleeds are rarely serious (though we need to be cautious) and even if frequent nose bleeding occurs, it is easily treated.

[Learn More About Reasons For Cold With Bloody Nose]

Frequent Nosebleeds in Children Symptoms

Usually, nose bleeding occurs only from one nostril. Usually, the symptoms of frequent nosebleed in children would include bleeding from one nostril. Such bleeding should be controlled and for a small time only. In case the frequency of nose bleeding and volume of bleeding is excessive, one needs to seek medical help immediately considering the tender age of the children.

When To Worry About Nosebleeds in Children?

Usually, nosebleeds are rarely serious, but in case the parents observe the following symptoms, they should pay heed to such nosebleeds and seek medical attention immediately.

● High frequency of nosebleeds where the child is experiencing nosebleed often
● When the nose of the child tends to bruise easily
● When the child experience more than expected bleeding from minor wounds or even bleeding from other sensitive areas such as teeth gum

.Where the child might have inserted something into his or her nose, especially something sharp such as a pencil or pen
● When the child has been recently put on some kind of medication

We Should Immediately Consult A Practicing Medical Practitioner in Case

● The child experiences heavy nosebleeds accompanied by dizziness or weakness
● The child experiences bleeding nose due to some injury, fall, or blow
● The bleeding of the nose continues even after two attempts of applying pressure in order to stop the flow of blood for 10 minutes each

[Learn More About Nose Cauterization]

How to Stop Frequent Nosebleeds in Children?

In the case of Nosebleeds in Children, The Following Steps Should be Followed

  • The parents should stay calm and instead reassure the child
  • Make the child sit upright either on a chair or on the lap and then tilt the head of the child slightly forward
  • Never lean the head of the child backwards since this may lead to the blood flow down the back of the throat which might taste bad and lead to vomiting, gagging, or coughing, thus causing further trouble.
  • Pinch the soft part of the nose just below the bony ridge of the nose gently with a tissue or a clean wash cloth
  • Maintain pressure on the nose for about 10 minutes (the time should be maintained strictly since stopping the pressure too soon can lead to bleeding again)
  • Make the child relax for a while after such nose bleed and discourage him/her from picking nose, rubbing, blowing or any such rough play with the nose

Tips For Frequent Nosebleeds in Children

Mostly the nosebleeds in kids happen due to drying effect or irritation caused due to over drying of nasal membrane, thus some of the tips for frequent nosebleeds in children

  • In order to prevent the child from hurting himself /herself while nose picking, keep the nails trim and short
  • Keep the nose membrane moist with saline nasal spray or gel or dabbing antibiotic ointment gently around the opening of the nostrils
  • Keep the rooms humid by using a vaporizer in the rooms in case the rooms are too dry
  • In case of nose injury, make sure the children wear protective athletic equipment during any sporting activity

Frequent nosebleeds are common among children but it is important to not panic and handle the situation calmly.

Medically Reviewed By
Dr. Kaushal M. Bhavsar (MBBS, MD)Assistant Professor in Pulmonary Medicine, GMERS Medical College, Ahmedabad