May 29, 2007 6:54 AM   Subscribe

Nosebleed filter: I tend to get nosebleeds easily. I am not a cocaine addict. More inside.

For as long as I can remember I have been getting nosebleeds. The occurrences vary in frequency, but they are nonetheless annoying (especially when you get three in one day).

I've noticed this happens when I am eating. Also, it occurs when I get upset. Oh, and sometimes when it's particularly hot outside. What's up with this?
posted by jne1813 to Health & Fitness (22 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I have the same thing. Use a bit of vaseline up there and I also use a netti pot...seems to keep it under control. I guess I just have some capillaries near the surface.
posted by evilelvis at 7:01 AM on May 29, 2007

Go to your ENT doctor. They may be able to cauterize the vessels to prevent this from happening. I'm guessing when it's hot out your vessels dilate. When you are upset it's probably the increase in pressure that causes.

IANAD, but please go see one. Three in one day is never normal.
posted by 6:1 at 7:06 AM on May 29, 2007

My sister and I both have the same thing. She got her nose veins cauterized and that has helped a lot. I never did and I still get them here and now; never as much as when I was a kid though. Dry air and lots of sunlight is the worst.
posted by mand0 at 7:10 AM on May 29, 2007

Seconding evilelvis- a bit of Vaseline on a q-tip in the morning & before bed. Not so much that you can't breathe, just enough to moisturize. That is what the doctors told me.
posted by MayNicholas at 7:29 AM on May 29, 2007

you're not along here but i have noticed that seems to get better with age.
posted by mmascolino at 7:37 AM on May 29, 2007

I used to get them a lot, even had the cauterization. Didn't work, until a friend suggested it was probably a mineral deficiency. I started taking Calcium/Magnesium/Zinc tablets in 3:2:1 ration (1000mg cal, etc), and haven't had a single nosebleed in 8 years.
posted by blue_beetle at 8:12 AM on May 29, 2007

I heard that you really shouldn't use Vaseline for your nose on account of it being petroleum based and thus bad to inhale. My pharmacist told me to use a bit of shea butter instead, which worked great. I have no idea if there are similar concerns about inhaling.
posted by carolr at 8:27 AM on May 29, 2007

I don't want this to turn into HorribleAnecdoteFilter, but I had chronic nosebleeds. Went to the doctor, had her cauterize the vessels. They didn't stop. I figured it was nothing, but it was nasal polyps and I had to have them removed.

If you're due for a doctor appointment, make sure to mention it.
posted by adamwolf at 8:57 AM on May 29, 2007

Have you checked your blood pressure lately? Sometimes nosebleeds result from spikes. (And for me, the three triggers you mention -- eating, stress, and hot weather -- are the times it's highest.) Definitely something to mention to your doctor (and a reason to schedule a physical if you haven't had one in a while).
posted by aught at 9:04 AM on May 29, 2007

The Vaseline suggestion is a good one, but I find bacitracin (same as Neosporin) works even better. Also, you don't mention your age, but you may find the situation improves markedly over time. Once I hit my mid-twenties, my nosebleed frequency went down dramatically, and I've known a number of other people with similar stories to tell.
posted by j-dawg at 9:15 AM on May 29, 2007

See a doctor- my dad had bone spurs growing into his nostrils. The removal process was .... entertaining.
posted by jenkinsEar at 9:20 AM on May 29, 2007

I have found that oxymetazoline decongestant spray gives me nose bleeds if it contains menthol, or camphor, or eucalyptus, or whatever the heck thing like that they put in it.

When I switched to a different brand which didn't have that extra stuff in it, my nose bleeds stopped.
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 10:19 AM on May 29, 2007 [1 favorite]

I got nosebleeds all the time as a kid. They stopped in late high school, but have started up again recently (some 10 years later).

Mine are related to: the dry air, the horrible allergies I have, the constant noseblowing due to horrible allergies, and stress.

If you can get to the ER or urgent care place while your nose is bleeding you might be able to get certain capillaries cauterized, which may or may not help.

Yes, you could have polyps or bone spurs or an alien growing in there, but since it seems you've had them for a long time, it seems bloody noses are just normal for you (as they are for me).
posted by misanthropicsarah at 11:17 AM on May 29, 2007

Cauterizing worked for me, when I was a kid. I used to have to stand over the sink while my nose bled, it was really bad.

The cauterizing hurt like a bitch - but it cured my constant bleeding.
posted by pinky at 11:18 AM on May 29, 2007

Wow. A lot of people have done the cauterizing thing. I used to get nosebleeds a lot as a kid. I'd just put a cold wet washcloth on the back of my neck for a few minutes and keep my nose up. Sometimes I'd stick tissue paper up in the offending nostril and apply direct pressure carefully. Eventually the nosebleed would go away and I'd go back to playing. I'd take it easy the rest of the day. A little.

As others have mentioned, it does lessen as you get older. I remember it happening more when I lived up north in Michigan - especially during the fall and winter months. Down here in Texas it's usually hot and humid, and that keeps the nosebleeds down. Dry air tends to cause damage to sinus membranes over time.

If the blood is a bright happy red, that just means you're healthy. Don't freak out. =) It never hurts to replenish the lost liquid by making a point to drink some water soon after, but unless you're losing more than half a pint, I wouldn't run to the ER.
posted by ZachsMind at 11:41 AM on May 29, 2007

I used to have frequent and very bad nosebleeds as a kid. I was hospitalized once because they couldn't get it to stop for so long, and when I got home I had to spend the next two days in bed (with my nose packed with gauze and taped up). I had it cauterized twice before the third grade. What really irks me to this day is I still remember the ER doctor that one time saying he saw fingenail marks in my nose and if I didn't pick it this wouldn't happen. For the record, that was most definitely not the cause; ever since I can remember the thought of such a thing has squicked me out. I think he was just looking for an excuse to give my parents.

Anyway, IANAD but as an adult I was diagnosed with Lupus and several concurrent maladies, including Sjogren's Syndrome (unusually dry mucous membranes). One of the results of Sjogren's is a high amount of dental cavities, due to the low production of saliva. When I was in the third grade, my dentist put me on a special diet for three months in orde to determine why I had so many cavities (apparently he thought I munched on sugar cubes as a snack). Looking back, it all adds up in my mind but no one thought to connect the dots at the time.

You should definitely see an ENT. Even if they cauterize, that's just a stopgap measure to treat the symptoms. You want to find out the cause. If it's high blood pressure, or Sjogren's, or something else, you need to know.
posted by Oriole Adams at 12:15 PM on May 29, 2007

I got cauterized, and it didn't hurt at all, to my recollection, and it stopped my nosebleeds forever.
posted by mckenney at 12:32 PM on May 29, 2007

I had regular nosebleeds as a child, but then I got my nose cauterized. They didn't completely stop, but they did ease up a lot. They happen to me due to my allergies and blowing my nose too much, now-a-days. In fact, I had one last night, albeit a minor one.
posted by SansPoint at 2:12 PM on May 29, 2007

Nosebleeds are common in children, less so in adults.
Unless you have unusual surface vessels, hypertension must be ruled out. The mineral treatement suggested above is an early intervention you could use but it would be far better to rule out high blood pressure as a cause of your nosebleeds.
3 times a day is not normal
posted by Wilder at 4:23 PM on May 29, 2007

I've had trouble with nosebleeds where the air has been made very dry from air conditioning. This would explain why you get them when it is very hot outside. Avoid sitting right by an air conditioning duct, drink plenty of water, and add some humidity to the air at home.
posted by yohko at 6:48 PM on May 29, 2007

Nthing seeing the doctor. My boyfriend gets nosebleeds, especially when he's stressed or ill. He had his veins cauterized a while back, but they've returned.
posted by lhall at 6:50 PM on May 29, 2007

No cure or answer here, just sympathy. I'm afraid my superhero alterego is "BioHazard Girl." I get a good gusher a couple times a month, but fortunately they seem to remedy themselves within five minutes or so. When I get multiple in one day, I figure the original scab cracked or something.

No hypertension here, but a change in weather coming (usually cooler to warmer, so I had a good gusher yesterday & tomorrow is supposed to be 80), sometimes stress, dry air definitely (so traveling in a car for more than an hour with air conditioning, middle of winter in a.c'd buildings, etc, are triggers)... Had some luck with the calcium/magnesium for a bit, but not consistently. Bleh. Mostly I've just learned never to leave home without access to kleenex, preferably a good number of them, just in case. Eventually I'll likely make my way to an ENT.
posted by susanbeeswax at 11:01 PM on May 29, 2007

« Older Whither realistic cops on TV and film?   |   Have you ever worked at a place that encouraged... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.