Advertisement

What causes nosebleeds?

Marilene B. Wang, MD
Ear, Nose & Throat (Otolaryngology)
Nosebleeds can happen frequently in certain conditions. There may be some minor trauma to the nose. The nose may be dry on the inside, perhaps because of weather or indoor heat and air-conditioning, and the lining of the nose will crack with even minor trauma, causing it to bleed. A blood clot forms and then dislodges, and your nose will bleed again.

Some common causes for a nosebleed include colds and allergies, injury to the nose, low humidity, high altitude, and vigorous blowing of the nose, or picking the nose. Since the blood vessels lie very close to the surface in the nose, even a slight injury can cause the nose to bleed.

Nosebleeds may be due to a change in air moisture. When the air is dry, the nasal membranes dry out and are more susceptible to bleeding and infection. Nose picking may also lead to nosebleeds. (This answer provided for NATA by the Southern Connecticut State University Athletic Training Education Program)
 Dr. Kathleen Handal, MD
Emergency Medicine
A nose bleed is often caused by a direct blow to the face or head, high blood pressure problems, or the use of blood thinning medications, including aspirin. It's hard to know how much bleeding occurs during a nose bleed because the victim often swallows some blood.
Doc's First Aid Guide: Read It Before You Need It

More About this Book

Doc's First Aid Guide: Read It Before You Need It

In a medical emergency, time is of the essence. "Doc's First Aid Guide" is an illustrated, first-aid pocket handbook designed to be used as a quick reference and includes the latest CPR guidelines....

Continue Learning about Nose Disorders

Nasal Polyps and Eosinophilic Asthma
Nasal Polyps and Eosinophilic Asthma
Nasal polyps are benign growths that form in the nasal cavity and sinuses. Shaped like teardrops, they vary in size and may form on their own or in cl...
Read More
How does perennial allergic rhinitis affect the body?
Sigma NursingSigma Nursing
Like seasonal allergic rhinitis caused by seasonal allergies, perennial allergic rhinitis occurs whe...
More Answers
What are the treatment options for allergic rhinitis?
Sigma NursingSigma Nursing
If your allergic rhinitis symptoms are interfering with your daily life, you should talk to your doc...
More Answers
Why Do I Keep Getting Bloody Noses?
Why Do I Keep Getting Bloody Noses?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.