Monday March 17 2014

Nose bleeding: First aid

By Betty Ndagire

Do your nasal membranes keep drying or do you keep picking your nose? You could end up nose bleeding. Nosebleeds occur in the front of the nose and involve only one nostril.

Normally this can be prevented with proper lubrication of the nasal passages and avoiding picking the nose. Often times, people who develop nose bleeding can handle the problem without the need of a physician if they follow first aid recommendations.

Dr Arnold Nkalubo of the Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Department at Mulago Hospital, says once you experience this problem, try to lean forward slightly with the head tilted forward because leaning back or tilting the head back allows the blood to run back into your sinuses (facial bones) and throat and can cause gagging or inhaling the blood which is dangerous to one’s health.

Always try to pinch all the soft parts of the nose together between your thumb and index finger. “Press them firmly toward the face squeezing the pinched parts of the nose against the bones of the face,” Dr Nkalubo says.

Dr Nkalubo advises that one should consult a doctor for a nosebleed if bleeding cannot be stopped, there is a large amount of blood lost, or you or else you might feel weak or faint. A doctor may use nasal packs to stop nosebleeds when conservative measures fail.

He warns that a nose bleeding person should not take aspirin or other blood thinning products when you get a nose bleed. However, if they had been prescribed by a doctor, then consult your doctor before stopping any medication.