Humidifiers are well known for alleviating many of the most common winter woes caused by dry indoor air: chapped lips, itchy and dry skin, dry eyes, or a flaky scalp. But did you know a humidifier is also your best defense against nosebleeds brought on by dry air? Yes, there is a way to avoid the messy inconvenience of a bloody nose.
However, choosing the best humidifier for nosebleeds requires research since all humidifiers differ. In this article, you’ll learn how humidifiers can help prevent a bloody nose, the top three characteristics of humidifiers to look for, and our recommended models.
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What Causes Nosebleeds?
Common causes of nosebleeds include rubbing or picking your nose, trauma, heavy nose blowing, and sneezing (especially with a closed mouth). However, the most common cause of nosebleeds is dry air. Nosebleeds from dry air occur when the nasal membrane (thin tissue in your nose) dries out and becomes hard or crusty, making it more likely to bleed.
The likelihood of a nosebleed increases in the winter when the air is drier. First, as outdoor humidity naturally drops, indoor humidity will fall somewhat, too. On top of that, when you crank up your central heating system, it dries out the air even further. Dry air can also be an issue in the summer from overuse of air conditioning.
People living in arid climates are especially vulnerable to nosebleeds caused by dry air. Venturing outside a lot in cold, dry air has the same effect.
Although nosebleeds are annoying, they could signal a serious health issue. But if you suspect dry indoor air is responsible for your bloody nose, running a humidifier can quickly solve your problem, providing almost immediate protection.
Do Humidifiers Help With Nosebleeds?
Humidifiers help with nosebleeds by adding humidity to indoor air, maintaining the integrity of the thin skin inside your nose, which can otherwise become too dry without sufficient moisture. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the optimal indoor relative humidity level for comfort and health is 30-50%. Humidifiers often have built-in, programmable humidistats to regulate air moisture. Alternatively, a portable hygrometer (see our list of recommended models) will help you measure indoor humidity.
A humidifier will soothe and restore the elasticity of the nasal membrane’s delicate skin when it becomes cracked and brittle due to exposure to dry indoor air. When that skin becomes compromised, tiny blood vessels close to the surface rupture easily, causing a nosebleed.
Besides rejuvenating skin and hair back to health, humidifiers may also:
- Relieve nasal congestion
- Prevent dry coughing
- Soothe dry lips
- Reduce snoring caused by nasal congestion and throat irritation
- Prevent wooden furniture and floorboards from cracking or warping
How to Choose the Right Humidifier for Your Home
When choosing the right humidifier for your home, consider these three factors.
1. Types of Humidifiers
Here are the most common types of humidifiers available on the market today. Each type of humidifier has its pros and cons to evaluate.
- Ultrasonic: High-frequency vibrations from a diaphragm inside the water tank create a fine mist that disperses throughout your home. Ultrasonic humidifiers operate very quietly, which makes them ideal for a bedroom.
- Evaporative: A wick filter draws water from a tank, and a fan blows dry air through the wet filter, emitting moisture into your home. Evaporative models are suitable for larger living areas and even the whole house.
- Vaporizer: A heating rod boils water, dispensing steam to humidify indoor air. The heating element makes this appliance potentially hazardous for kids.
- HVAC Whole-House System: As the most expensive option, it is connected to your central heating/cooling system, humidifying all rooms equally.
A cool mist ultrasonic or evaporative humidifier will do the job safely and affordably to prevent nosebleeds.
2. Size of Your Home or Room
Whether you’re looking for a humidifier for a baby’s room or the family room, measure the square footage first. Then look for a humidifier that’s rated for that area. One that’s too small won’t add significant moisture when needed but will work continuously, wasting electricity.
However, if a humidifier is suitable for an even larger space than yours, that may be even better. A more powerful model will humidify a dry room faster. If you want to use it in a larger area in the future, you’ll have that option, too.
Remember that evaporative humidifiers are noisier than ultrasonic models at high settings. This may not be an issue during the day, but it could be at night in your bedroom when you’re trying to sleep.
3. Your Budget
Desktop cool mist humidifiers are inexpensive but aren’t a good investment to humidify a larger space, such as a living room. If you’re sure you want to purchase an appliance for one room only, make sure it’s rated for it in square footage. You may not need a high-priced device with all the bells and whistles like smart home connectivity if your sole purchasing objective is to ward off bloody noses. A little research will uncover the humidifier that meets your criteria and fits your budget.
Best Humidifier for Nosebleeds
After considering the important factors above (type of humidifier, room size, and budget), we have selected the three best humidifiers for nosebleeds.
1. Best Overall: Levoit LV600HH Ultrasonic Humidifier
For a medium to large room, the Levoit LV600HH ultrasonic is our top pick as the best humidifier for bloody noses. It will quietly and efficiently add moisture to spaces as large as 753 square feet for up to 60 hours.
It’s ideal for bedrooms if you need to prevent unwanted, middle-of-the-night nosebleeds, letting you sleep peacefully. Since the water tank is large, you likely won’t have to refill it during the night. Equipped with a remote control, you can stay under the covers if you need to reset the humidistat. The LV600HH is also powerful enough to humidify more extensive living areas throughout the day.
Are you experiencing a cold or flu? The Levoit can dispense a cool or warm mist through its rotating nozzles to ease a dry throat or stuffy nose and promote a productive cough. If your illness makes sleeping difficult, add a few drops of a sleep-enhancing scent to the essential oil tray for a pleasant night of sweet dreams.
2. Best for the Whole House: AIRCARE MA1201 Evaporative Humidifier
Thinking about investing in a whole-house humidifier but hesitant because of the price tag? The Aircare MA1021 evaporative humidifier may be the perfect substitute.
Able to humidify up to a whopping 3,600 square feet in 36 hours or less while maintaining the desired indoor humidity, this workhorse has a 3.6-gallon water reservoir. Although heavy when full, the Aircare’s wheels make it a snap to move around your house.
With four different fan speeds, you’ll find one that’s right for you. You’ll have the option of a quieter, lower setting for nights and a louder, higher setting during daytime activities. For working families with children, the Aircare MA1201 will bring breathing comfort to everyone anywhere in your house. At the same time, it minimizes the risk of nosebleeds in kids and adults.
3. Best Budget Model: Everlasting Comfort Ultrasonic Humidifier
The best reliable budget-friendly choice is the Everlasting Comfort ultrasonic cool mist humidifier. Suitable for rooms as large as 500 square feet, this appliance will humidify the air for up to 50 hours on low-mist mode or 22 hours on a high setting with a pleasant, quiet mist. A 1.6-gallon water tank makes it light enough to move from room to room if needed.
The Everlasting Comfort sends off a cool mist of up to 9 oz. (270 ml) of water every hour. Without a dangerous heating element, it’s safe around children. Since it’s ultrasonic, there are no replaceable wick filters to purchase, saving you money.
Although this model doesn’t come with all the features of more expensive cool mist humidifiers, it will meet your expectations of warding off nosebleeds caused by a dry nose and much more.
With a humidifier maintaining indoor air moisture at the EPA-recommended level of 30-50%, you’ll benefit from a significantly reduced chance of succumbing to a nosebleed caused by dry indoor air. Nosebleeds are most common in winter when central heating dries out the air but could occur at other times in a dry climate or when running the air conditioner for an extended time.
One of the essential characteristics of the best humidifier to prevent a bloody nose is its suitability for the space you wish to humidify. If you use it primarily at night to avoid a bloody nose awakening, select a cool mist humidifier appropriate for your bedroom size. Spatial considerations are especially relevant if you’re prone to nosebleeds when sick in bed with a cold or flu and already suffering from an overactive nose.
Our top recommendation, the Levoit LV600HH, is an easy-to-use and reliable humidifier that will help prevent nosebleeds caused by dry air. It has a large, easy-to-clean water tank, a built-in humidistat with a remote control, and a cool mist or warm mist setting to help with nasal congestion.
Readers should note that even the best humidifier cannot save you every time if you experience frequent, heavy bleeds of long duration. Consult your healthcare provider for anything other than an occasional, light nosebleed when breathing in dry indoor air. A hospital emergency room visit is your best course of action for the most severe nosebleed.