What to Do If an Infant's Nose Is Bleeding?

Most nose bleeds are harmless but they can still be alarming when they occur in an infant. The most likely cause of an infant nosebleed is dryness or irritation. Sometimes an infant can manage to scratch the inside of the nose with a fingernail, but picking isn't usually a problem during the first year of life. A baby can also develop a nosebleed from an accident, such as a fall. If simple home treatment techniques fail to stop the bleeding, if the infant gets recurrent nosebleeds or has other symptoms seek medical attention for the infant.

A father holds his baby while the mother is on the phone. Credit: Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Step 1

Prop or hold the baby upright and slightly forward. This can reduce the blood drainage down the throat.

Step 2

Catch the blood with a soft tissue or washcloth. While catching the blood, gently pinch the soft part of the nose shut. BabyCenter.com suggests holding this for 10 minutes to help stop the bleeding.

Step 3

Check for bleeding after releasing the nose. If the nose is still bleeding, contact a medical care provider.

Step 4

Reduce nasal dryness by placing a small amount of petroleum jelly on a cotton swab and gently rub it inside the baby's nostrils. Run a humidifier in the infant's room while playing and while sleeping to help increase the moisture in the nasal passages.


DrSpock.com warns against using ice to stop a nosebleed and against inserting anything into the infant's nose.rnrnAvoid putting a baby flat on his back during a nose bleed or tilting his head backwards. This only causes the blood to drain into the throat.

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