How to stop facial bleeding

If emergency care is not needed, the following steps will protect the wound and protect you from another person's blood.

  • Before you try to stop the bleeding:
    • Wash your hands well with soap and water, if available.
    • Put on medical gloves, if available, before applying pressure to the wound. If gloves are not available, use many layers of fabric, plastic bags, or whatever you have between your hands and the wound.
    • Have the person hold his or her own hand over the wound, if possible, and apply pressure and elevate the injured area.
    • Use your bare hands to apply pressure only as a last resort.
  • Have the person lie down with his or her head elevated.
  • Remove any visible objects that are easy to remove.
  • Remove or cut clothing from around the wound. Remove any jewelry from the general area of the wound.
  • Do not attempt to clean out the wound at this point.
  • Press firmly on the facial wound with a clean cloth or the cleanest material available. If there is an object in the wound, apply pressure around the object, not directly over it.
    • Do not press on an injured eye. Never press on the neck or throat or interfere with a person's breathing.
    • Apply steady pressure. Use the Check Your Symptoms section to determine your next steps.
  • Watch for shock.

Last Updated: May 11, 2009

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