Expert Advice

How can I prevent frequent nosebleeds?

Bioflavonoids, a class of antioxidants found in citrus fruits, strengthen blood vessels.

How can I prevent frequent nosebleeds?
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Several studies show that bioflavonoid supplements can prevent nosebleeds. But try two other approaches first.

Talk to your doctor about reducing your dose if you take drugs or herbs that thin your blood, because they may worsen your nosebleeds. Culprits include aspirin, Coumadin (warfarin), heparin, garlic (Allium sativum), ginger (Zingiber officinale), ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba), and ginseng (Panax ginseng).

Once you've ruled out drug or herb side effects, apply natural vitamin E (dalpha tocopherol) or zinc oxide ointment (commonly used to treat diaper rash) to the inside of the tip of your nose. This delicate area is prone to damage from blowing or even from breathing dry air, and both vitamin E and zinc help heal injured tissue. Using a cotton swab, apply a few drops of vitamin E from a capsule or a dab of zinc ointment inside the tip of your nose every night before bed until your nosebleeds stop. You can also use vitamin E or zinc preventively if you have a cold or if you know you will be in a dry environment, like on an airplane.

If the vitamin E or zinc treatment doesn't help within three days, also take 500 mg of bioflavonoids twice a day until your nosebleeds stop. Bioflavonoids, a class of antioxidants found in citrus fruits, strengthen blood vessels to make them less likely to leak blood.