I’ve always had nosebleeds. Ever since I was a kid, I knew that if I blew my nose too hard, or if I picked my nose, (not that I ever did that very often but come on, there were days when there would be a sharp booger poking the inside of your nose and what are you going to do, leave it there all day? Of course not), I would have bloody streaks on the tissue.
(And HELLO, by the way. It’s been months since I had the energy/motivation to write – aren’t you glad my first post in months is about disgusting things like nosebleeds? You’re welcome).
But this year, this year has been different. I think it started … back in February? I started getting nosebleeds daily.
And I’m not talking minor nosebleeds, I’m talking nosebleeds so severe it’s running down my face and I’m gagging on my own blood when I tip my head so far back I feel like I’m cutting off brain activity.
Did they start back in February? Maybe it was March, maybe in reality it was last week, all I know is, I’ve been having them daily for a while now. Well, maybe not daily, but four or five times a week.
It all started when Blake started complaining of nosebleeds. Now Brandon has always had them. He would have them so bad he would wake up and his white pillowcase would be bright red. He would have them so bad, I seriously thought I was going to have to take him to the ER a few times because I couldn’t control the flow.
But I don’t think he’s had them in a while. In fact, I don’t think he’s had any trouble with his allergies or nosebleeds since moving out of the house. He lives in an apartment, away from trees, more specifically, away from the four oak trees in our neighbor’s yard across the street. (He’s HIGHLY allergic to oak).
So Brandon having nosebleeds? Not unusual. Blake having nosebleeds? Weird.
I bought him some moisturizing spray and asked him to use it. He says that does seem to help but he continues to have them from time-to-time.
Me? I started having nosebleeds shortly after Blake told me he was having nosebleeds. Like mother, like son.
Again, not terribly unusual for me. I am prone to them whenever the air is dry and I’ve always had sinus problems. But the nosebleeds I’ve had these past several weeks (months?) have been … disturbing. And more than annoying because they tend to happen when I’m at work. I’ve been lucky so far, the “flows” I’ve had so far have been before clinic started, after clinic finished or off-clinic days. But one day, my nosebleed was so heavy it lasted 20 minutes. And that was the day it was happening so fast I was literally gagging on my own blood.
(TMI? Well, welcome to my blog).
And it’s always my right nostril that bleeds, never my left. Riddle me that one.
I finally figured out one of the reasons it was flowing so fast and heavy – I was taking baby aspirin as well as Excedrin Migraine, which has aspirin in it, because of my headaches. I took the baby aspirin because I was having heart palpitations (turns out they were actually panic attacks) and well, I have thin blood to begin with which translates into watery blood. In fact, my blood was so thin, I was spontaneously bruising. I had these weird bruises show up on my arms and I read somewhere that was a sign your blood was too thin.
I finally wised up and stopped taking aspirin. In any form. And though I still continue to have daily (mostly) nosebleeds, they aren’t lasting twenty minutes, more like five so I know my blood is not as thin because it’s clotting faster.
Now, if I can just figure out why I’m having these nosebleeds. I’m pretty sure they are tied to my sinuses because whenever my sinuses start squeezing and getting tight, I have a nosebleed. I’ve also been using my moisturizing nose spray and taking allergy pills, which seems to help, so that leads me to believe it has something to do with the air, allergies and/or sinuses.
I’ve found the best way to make them stop? Is just to lean over the sink and let the blood drip out and run its course. When the dripping slows down/stops, I stuff a piece of tissue up my nose, tip my head and breathe through my mouth. It stops shortly after that. Pinching my nose just makes it worse. (Though after doing a little big of research, I was pinching the bridge of my nose, not the soft tissue of my nostrils).
So yeah. I guess since I’m no longer menstruating, my body has to bleed some other way. (Just imagine what I’m like having around in real life? If you’re squeamish? Do not approach me).
We have a line of storms heading our way. I wonder if there’s any correlation between barometric pressure and my nosebleeds? I know my sinuses tighten up whenever there’s a change in the weather and there’s an old joke for people who live in Missouri: Don’t like the weather? Give it a minute. And for real, that is what it’s like in Missouri. Our weather is constantly changing.
I did a little research on nosebleeds for anyone out there wondering … and I’d like to add a word of caution: please take what you read on the Internet with a grain of salt. This should be applied to everything you read, but especially to any medical advice you’re seeking. I can say this because I work in the health care field and I can’t tell you the number of patients that come in convinced they have a life-threatening disease because their symptoms matched what they looked up on the Internet. Only a doctor can really diagnose what’s going on with you and if you’re that concerned, then seek your doctor’s advice. Don’t self-diagnose yourself. that will only get you into trouble and scare the bejeebees out of you.
So yeah. I’m dealing with frequent nosebleeds.
I feel like there’s so much to tell you and yet, there’s not. My life is the same day in, day out, but I would like to update you on what’s going on in my life. I’ve really done a piss-poor job of blogging this past year, actually, the past several years, ever since I started working at the hospital, but I will try my best to write more. I WANT to write more. I just have so little energy by the time I get home every night that the thought of using my brain any more just makes me want to cry.
Be patient with me. As I tell the patients I help who are frustrated and discouraged, “hey, life happens. All you can do is find ways to cope with it.”