Children often like to experiment by placing object up their nose. If the objects are small and fit neatly into the nostrils, they can become stuck.
If this happens you should not try to remove the object yourself. Pushing an object, especially a sharp one, up the nose, can cause damage that leads to bleeding from the nose.
Looking after yourself
You should go to your emergency department or your doctor as soon as possible. Before you go, here is some first aid advice.
If your nose is bleeding
- Lean forward and firmly pinch the nose below the bridge (the bony part), for 15 minutes non-stop, then release the pinch to check if the bleeding has stopped.
- Do not tilt your head backwards as the blood may go down your throat into your stomach, which can make you feel sick.
- Repeat the procedure on the way to the emergency department or your doctor if the nosebleed does not stop after 15 minutes of non-stop pressure.
If a child’s nose is bleeding
- A child with a nosebleed may be very frightened or distressed about it. Try to comfort the child and reassure them.
- Ask them to lean forward and firmly pinch their nose below the bridge (the bony part), for 15 minutes non-stop, then release the pinch to check if the bleeding has stopped.
- While they are pinching their nose, ask the child to breathe through their mouth. They should spit out any blood that is in their mouth as swallowing blood may make them feel sick.
- Place a clean, cold compress, such as a cold flannel or cloth, over the bridge of the nose.
When the bleeding has stopped
- Try not to pick or blow your nose even if it feels uncomfortable to decrease the change of another nosebleed.
- Avoid any strenuous activity, such as playing sports, for 24 hours after the bleeding has stopped.
- Do not pack your nostrils with tissues or cotton wool.
Not sure what to do next?
If you are still concerned about your nosebleed that has been caused by a foreign object, why not use healthdirect’s online Symptom Checker to get advice on when to seek medical attention.
The Symptom Checker guides you to the next appropriate healthcare steps, whether it’s self care, talking to a health professional, going to a hospital or calling triple zero (000).
Last reviewed: August 2015