Nose vessels may expand during pregnancy, and the increased blood supply causes more pressure on those soft vessels, causing nose vessels prone to bleeding. This is the reason that nosebleeds are common during pregnancy – Every one out of five pregnant women faces this issue, compared to only one in twenty of non-pregnant women.
But the occasional minor nosebleed is usually harmless. Some medical experts say even a few nosebleeds over the course of pregnancy aren’t cause for alarm.
You’re more likely to get a nosebleed when you have a cold, sinus infection, high blood pressure, blood clotting disorders and allergies when the membranes inside your nose dry out, as they do in air-conditioned rooms, cold weather, airline cabins and other environments with dry air.
Different ways to stop nose bleeding
If you are facing nose bleeds during pregnancy:
Sit down and lean forward a bit but keep your head higher than your chest.
Apply pressure on the soft lower part of your nose – that’s both nostrils using thumb and index finger.
Use your mouth for breathing and keep your nostrils closed for 10 to 15 minutes. Don’t keep checking to see if the bleeding has stopped before then because that could interfere with clotting.
You may apply ice to constrict the blood vessels and reduce the bleeding. Hold a cold pack over the bridge of your nose with the other hand.
If the bleeds still don’t stop then you can repeat the same for one more time. But please don’t experiment it for a long time and consult your health care professional for immediate help
Don’t lie down or tilt your head back: You might end up swallowing blood, which could cause nausea and vomiting or even make you accidentally inhale some blood.
When to consult your doctor for the nosebleed?
Contact your doctor if you have very frequent nosebleeds during pregnancy. It could be a sign of any complicated medical condition.
Sometime a nosebleed during pregnancy may require immediate medical help. Call 911 or have someone drive you to the emergency room if:
The bleeding causes dizziness, uneasiness, or discomfort.
Your skin color changes to pale after/during bleeding.
You have chest pain.
The bleeding doesn’t stop after half an hour of pressure.
The blood flow is very heavy.
You have trouble breathing due to bleeding.
You get a nose bleeding after a head injury, even if you only have minor bleeding.
What should I do to prevent nosebleeds during pregnancy?
Drink a lot of fluids to keep your mucous membranes well hydrated.
Blow your nose gently. Blowing too hard can cause a nosebleed.
Keep your mouth open when sneezing. This reduces pressure on your nose.
Use a good humidifier inside your house, especially during the winter or if you live in a dry climate. Don’t overheat your bedroom and stay away from irritants like smoke.
Lubricant can be used to prevent dryness. Some experts recommend petroleum jelly. Others suggest a special water-based lubricant that’s available over the counter at pharmacies. Nose sprays or drops can help too.
If your doctor advises that you should use a medicate snow spray or decongestant take it exactly as instructed, please don’t overuse it. These medications can dry out and further irritate your nose.