When to worry about nosebleeds

September 14, 2023

Nosebleeds In Children: When To Worry

If you have a child who has had a nosebleed, it can be hard to know what to do. Nosebleeds can look alarming to parents and children alike. But most of the time, they are a minor injury that’s completely harmless and can be easily treated at home.

Nosebleeds are very common in children and usually not serious. Children are more prone to nosebleeds and usually grow out of having them.

Should you be worried if your child has a nosebleed? It’s important to remember that most children will experience at least one nosebleed in their lifetime. Here are a few useful things to know and what to do if your child has a nosebleed.

a child with a nosebleed

What causes nosebleeds?

Nosebleeds occur for many reasons that are usually not serious nor related to any other serious conditions. Nosebleeds can happen because:

  • Your child has been picking their nose.
  • They have been blowing their nose too hard.
  • Or putting sharp objects up their nose.
  • The inside of their nose is too dry because of a cold or the weather.
  • They’ve had an injury to their nose or face.

A nosebleed is a common occurrence for many children and can be caused by a variety of things. Knowing the facts about what to do and not do when your child has a nosebleed will help you feel more prepared.

What should I do if my child has a nosebleed?

If your child has a nosebleed, keep calm and act quickly.


  • Make sure your child sits up so blood does not go down their throat.
  • Get them to sit down. and lean forward, with their head tilted forward.
  • Pinch the bridge of their nose just above their nostrils for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Try and get them to breathe through their mouth.
  • Encourage your child to avoid blowing their nose!


  • Lie them back or tip their head back. It can cause blood to run down their throat.
  • Don’t use cotton swabs, tissues, or anything that can cause pressure inside their nostrils and make it worse.

When should I seek medical attention?

If the nosebleed lasts less than 10-15 minutes with no other symptoms, then it’s likely nothing to worry about.

You should take your child to A&E if:

  • They have a nosebleed for more than 15 minutes.
  • If it is accompanied by severe headache and dizziness.
  • They’re having difficulty breathing.
  • They are swallowing a lot of blood.
  • If the nosebleed occurs after an injury to the head or face, in case there are other injuries that need attention.

If doctors can see where the blood is coming from, they may seal it by pressing a stick with a chemical on it to stop the bleeding.

If this isn’t possible, they may pack your child’s nose with special sponges to stop the bleeding. Your child may need to be kept in hospital overnight for monitoring to make sure the bleeding had stopped and they are well enough to go home.

Children with very frequent and recurring nose bleeds may need to see an Ear Nose Throat specialist for children.

What should I do for my child after a nosebleed?

When a nosebleed stops, try to prevent your child from touching their nose for 24 hours to stop the nosebleed from reoccurring. Make sure they drink lots of fluids and are comfortable, using pain relief if needed. Preventing a child from being too active, can be a near-impossible task, so don’t worry too much!

If you’re concerned that your child is having regular or frequent nosebleeds, you can contact us and book an appointment with one of our paediatricians who can provide reassurance and advice.


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