What to Do If an Infant's Nose Is Bleeding?

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Few things are as scary to a parent as a bleeding child. When it's a nosebleed you may feel even more apprehensive, as you can't see where the bleeding is coming from. The treatment is simple: stop the bleeding, assess what's going on, and go to the doctor if you can't get bleeding under control or if there is something else wrong with your baby. Preventing nosebleeds, if you can, is even better.

Nosebleed First Aid

Crying is a good sign because it indicates your child is breathing well.
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First, don't panic. If the nosebleed was caused by an impact to your baby's face, have someone call the doctor if possible while you stop the bleeding. If it was spontaneous, your baby's nosebleed was probably triggered by dry nasal tissues or somthing similar.

Using a dry, absorbent, untextured cloth (a cloth diaper is ideal), cover the fleshy part of your baby's nose and squeeze firmly, making sure that he can breathe through his mouth. Crying is a good sign, as it indicates your baby is breathing well, but try to calm him if you can. Crying can bring more blood to the facial area, making the nosebleed more intense and harder to control.

Hold your baby with his face angled slightly downward so blood will flow out of his nose rather than down his throat. Continue this for about 10 minutes to ensure the bleeding has stopped.

If the cloth you're holding is soaked with blood before the time is up, keep up the pressure and have someone call 911 immediately. If, when you remove the cloth, the bleeding still continues, try pressure again for five more minutes; if the nosebleed still has not abated after this, call your doctor or 911.

After The Nosebleed

Comfort your child after the bleeding has stopped.
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Once the bleeding has stopped, comfort your child. Do not wash away any clots that have formed in her nostrils, as they are necessary to keep the bleeding under control. If your child had a nosebleed out of one nostril only, and if she does not have another nosebleed soon after, there is no need to worry. If your child was bleeding out of both nostrils, however, or was also spitting out blood during the nosebleed, take her to a doctor immediately. Dual-nostril bleeds usually indicate a high initiating point, which is sometimes linked with rare but dangerous conditions like leukemia; though your baby is probably fine, you should still have her checked.

Preventing Future Nosebleeds

Prevent future nosebleeds with a humidifier or allergy medication.
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The most common cause of nosebleed in infants is dry air. You maybe able to prevent future nosebleeds by having your child sleep in a room with a cool-air humidifier. Other causes include allergies and allergy medications, use of aspirin or ibuprofen, nose rubbing or picking, and a blow to the nose. If you take precautions to prevent future nosebleeds and your child still has them, discuss them with your pediatrician.


About the Author

Jamie Wilson has written online content for over a decade on a wide variety of subjects. Currently, she is the Augusta Military Lifestyles expert for a prominent website. She is also a published fiction writer and experienced Web designer working on a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing.

Photo Credits

  • Chris Harvey/Hemera/Getty Images