Pregnancy is a remarkable journey that involves numerous physical changes as the woman’s body adjusts to host another life.
Even while much of pregnancy is talked about some unknown factors such as nose bleeds could surprise expectant mothers.
This review article addresses the causes of possible complications and optimal management of nosebleeds in pregnant women to help expectant mothers and clinicians alike understand this rare phenomenon.
Causes Of Nosebleeds During Pregnancy
Epistaxis or nose bleeds may occur at any time in pregnancy but are more common during the second and third trimesters. Several integrated factors include;
➡️ Hormonal changes
Pregnancy-related psychological changes are influenced by the concentration of hormones, especially estrogen. All through the gestational period the estrogen rush causes vasodilation in blood vessels and an increase in their size.
This includes the nasal cavity, and arteries as well. These fine blood vessels are more vulnerable to rupture as a result of dilation leading to nosebleeds.
In addition, progesterone levels also increase and make the mucous membranes more fragile.
This blend of hormonal changes generates an atmosphere in which the nasal cavity is more susceptible to bleeding.
➡️ Increased Blood Volume
For this reason, blood volume increases substantially during pregnancy to meet the expanding needs of a growing fetus.
This increased blood flow can further increase pressure on the veins making them prone to bleeding. Vascular overload coupled with hormonal changes contribute to conditions favorable for epistaxis.
Additionally, changes in the circulatory system occur to support the developing baby; thus causing pressure build up on all blood vessel vessels across the body including those found inside the nasal passage.
➡️ Dry air and nasal congestion
Hormonal abnormalities in pregnancy lead to excessive nasal congestion and desiccation. In low humidity environments dry nasal passages easily break and bleed.
This is especially important in regions or seasons where the air is naturally dry.
Moreover, enhancement of blood supply to the nasal mucosa increases dryness, and therefore pregnant women should intrinsically be very careful about environmental factors that negatively influence their noses.
➡️ Potential Risks
Although nosebleeds during pregnancy typically do not pose any significant threat to the mother or baby it is important to keep in mind some risks that may arise from long and severe cases.
These risks are potentially hazardous bleeding anemia and blood pressure in some cases.
However, if nose bleeds are frequent or prolonged and lead to the occurrence of other symptoms patients should immediately consult a physician for an appropriate evaluation and guidance.
Moreover, chronic epistaxis is known to cause pain associated with poor quality of life and interruption in daily functions as well as sleepless nights that highlight the need for preventive controls.
Management and Prevention
Therefore, due to the complex nature of nosebleeds during pregnancy, it is very important for an expectant mother and her baby’s well-being that appropriate management strategies should be implemented. Here are some practical approaches:
➡️ Humidify the air
A humidifier in the bedroom can be effective at keeping up proper relative humidity. This is especially good in keeping the nasal passages from drying to prevent nose bleeds.
The humid setting preserves nasal well-being and teaches the effect of hormonal alterations.
Secondly, selecting hypoallergenic linens and maintaining ventilation in the rooms are also vital factors that can help maintain a favorable environment to prevent nasal dryness.
➡️ Nasal Saline Sprays
Saline nasal sprays are effective in maintaining the moistness of the nasal passages with regular use.
These simple nondestructive solutions help eliminate dryness and lower the risk of bleeding from a nosebleed.
Nasal saline sprays are rapidly available over the counter and they do not pose a risk to pregnant women.
Besides, saline sprays and saline nasal irrigation without a neti pot or squeeze bottle can help clean the nostrils and maintain moisture.
➡️ Gentle nose cleaning
It is important not to blow the nose forcefully as it worsens dryness and causes bleeding from the nostrils.
Alternatively, clean the nose softly. This may be done through the use of a saline solution or soft tissues to cleanse nostrils without irritating them.
In addition, the use of a saline-containing nasal gel or ointment as part from time to time can provide an additional safeguard preventing excessive dryness and undue bleeding.
Hydration is very important during pregnancy. Hydration is essential in maintaining bodily functions as well as nasal patency.
As such increased fluid consumption serves to balance the dehydration effects of hormonal change and preserves moist levels in nasal mucosa.
Furthermore, eating hydrating foods like fruits and vegetables while limiting the intake of caffeine and alcohol helps in overall body nasal health.
➡️ Consultation with health care provider
If nose bleeds continue or are accompanied by other alarming symptoms you should seek medical attention.
Healthcare specialists can evaluate the situation, eliminate possible background problems, and give detailed advice on proper treatment regimens.
Regular prenatal visits provide a chance to identify and manage health issues that may arise.
Healthcare providers may also suggest specific interventions which are based on the person’s health status and how severe his/her nose bleeds are.
➡️ Topical Vitamin E
According to some healthcare providers applying a dab of vitamin E topical oil inside the nostrils facilitates healing and helps prevent further nose bleeding while pregnant.
It is thus crucial to seek the advice of a medical practitioner before undertaking any new methods during pregnancy.
Consuming Vitamin E-containing foods has also been proven to support skin health and may help ease nasal dryness.
Usually, nose bleeds in pregnancy are a frequent occurrence caused by hormonal changes and increased blood volume as well as environmental factors.
Although they are rarely dangerous, pregnant women need to be aware of possible risks and preventive tactics that help to cope with this discomfort.
Through such an approach the well-being of both pregnant women and their child is guaranteed in cases where nosebleeds persist or are severe.
- Dugan-Kim, Melissa MD, MPH; Connell, Sarah; Stika, Catherine MD; Wong, Cynthia A. MD; Gossett, Dana R. MD. Epistaxis of Pregnancy and Association With Postpartum Hemorrhage (https://journals.lww.com/greenjournal/Fulltext/2009/12000/Epistaxis_of_Pregnancy_and_Association_With.24.aspx). Obstetrics & Gynecology: Volume 114:6.1322-1325.
- Sanghavi M, et al. (2014). Cardiovascular physiology of pregnancy. DOI: