The nose is situated in a prominent position on the face that makes it vulnerable to trauma. Couple that with the fact that it contains a large concentration of blood vessels, and you can see why nosebleeds are a common affliction in both children and adults.
What Causes Nosebleeds?
Nosebleeds (also known as epistaxis) are the result of a ruptured blood vessel in the nasal cavity, and are caused by a number of different factors. Trauma to the head or face, the intrusion of foreign objects into the nasal passages, colds, allergies, and infections can all produce a bloody nose. People who take blood thinners or aspirin are especially prone to nosebleeds, as are those suffering from hypertension (high blood pressure).
Most nosebleeds occur in the front (anterior) portion of the nose. The bleeding is usually confined to one nostril, and is easily treatable. Nosebleeds that occur in the rear of the nose (posterior) are more serious, and typically require medical care.
How To Stop a Nosebleed
To stem the flow of blood, apply direct pressure by pinching your nostrils together, and holding them in place until the blood has had time to clot (usually about ten minutes). Tilting your head forward is recommended to prevent blood from trickling down your throat; blood in the stomach can cause nausea and vomiting. Most times this will cause bleeding to stop, but if it persists then you should seek medical attention immediately.
To reduce your risks of developing a nosebleed, refrain from picking your nose. Use a humidifier, especially if you live in a dry climate; you can supplement this with saline nasal sprays and petroleum jelly, which will keep the nasal linings moist.