There is something about the sight of blood that really gets your attention–especially if it is your own. Stopping the bleeding can be a challenge.

When your father nicked himself shaving, the chances were good that he either tore off some toilet paper and stuck it to his chin or dug a styptic pencil out of the medicine cabinet. The aluminum sulfate (alum) in this old-fashioned item constricted blood vessels to stop the flow of blood.

Some new products on drugstore shelves go far beyond the styptic pencil. Whether it’s a nosebleed, a shaving nick or a kitchen cut, high-tech advances can stop the flow of blood surprisingly well.

QR products, sold by Biolife, have been available for a few years. There are formulations for cuts, lacerations and nosebleeds. They contain hydrophilic polymer powder combined with potassium salt which help blood clot quickly. Information is available online at www.biolife.com or by phone at 800-722-7559.
Another high-tech blood stopper is QuikClot Sport from Z-Medica (www.z-medica.com). It contains the mineral zeolite in a powdered formulation that absorbs water quickly. This concentrates the natural clotting properties of blood. QuikClot has been used by the military in Afghanistan and Iraq where it is credited with saving lives on the battlefield.

There are also bandages and gauze that can stop bleeding more quickly than the old-fashioned variety. Some contain cellulose, which forms a gel in contact with blood. Look for BloodSTOP gauze from LifeScience PLUS (www.lifescienceplus.com). CVS pharmacies also sell BloodStop Sheer Bandages.

Another interesting product for nosebleeds is called NasalCEASE (www.nasalcease.com). This biopolymer releases calcium and helps control a nosebleed quickly.

In the event you don’t have one of these new products available the next time you need to stop a minor cut or nosebleed, you may want to resort to a home remedy. Readers of this column have shared some amazing stories. Glenda, a veteran teacher, sent this one:

“I was teaching in a rural school in South Georgia with 120 first graders and four teachers. Kids played hard in the heat and humidity and many children came in with nosebleeds.

“I tried the old methods of squeezing their nostrils and having them hold their heads back while sitting quietly or putting ice on the backs of their necks to try to stop the bleeding. One day an elderly custodian who had lived in the south all of her life said to me, ‘You Yankees don't know how to do much, do you?’

“She took out her car keys, tied some string through the key ring, placed the string around the neck of the child with the nosebleed and dropped the keys down the child's back under her shirt. That nosebleed was no longer a frightening problem for the child or the teachers trying to help! For the next 15 years I treated nosebleeds as Daisy showed me and never had a problem again.”

For minor cuts, ground black pepper helps: “I sliced my forefinger instead of my bagel this evening. Fortunately, the pepper was in easy reach. It took 3 applications to finish the job, but the bleeding stopped.” One advantage of black pepper is that you don’t have to rush to the drugstore when you need it.

 

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  1. Mark S.
    Reply

    Super glue was actually initially designed as a field suture for the military. Whether it’s current formulation is safe in that regard I couldn’t tell you. But that’s why it sticks your fingers together so quickly and tenaciously.

  2. Medic/Doc 173d Airborne
    Reply

    Used Styptic pencils (basically alum like chemicals wrapped in paper like blackboad chalk) to remove leeches and stop bleeding from bite site. Better than just pulling or cutting off. Was quick and quiet. No major secondary wound infections in that awful place (So Vietnam in 60s)

  3. Guillaume Drolet
    Reply

    Isn’t super glue toxic?

  4. German
    Reply

    Just use some coffee, just take the coffee out of the can and put on and immediately will stop any bleeding…

  5. Millie
    Reply

    My good husband nicked our dog’s ear while grooming; not a serious cut, but right on the edge of his ear and it bled and bled and bled… we’d get the bleeding stopped; then Smiley (the dog) would shake his head and it would start all over again. Finally, Husband held a paper towel over the wound, pulled the paper towel away and in one motion, I dripped a drop of super glue on the nick. Hooray! Stopped the blood at once, and Smiley didn’t mind at all. I was afraid it would sting, but I guess not. Now I’m going to go wash 25 more towels.

  6. Jan
    Reply

    My mother-in-law is a long term coumadin user. She bleeds horribly every time she bumps her legs, so we keep QuikClot on hand to stop the bleeding within 5 minutes. It’s available at cabalas.com as well as at quikclot.com

  7. neal
    Reply

    I take blood thinners and spend a lot of time outdoors getting cuts and scratches, what can I buy that is offered to the public that will stop bleeding just in case I get a cut?

  8. david carter
    Reply

    My neighbor’s yellow retreiver, a dog named Puddin, was chewed up in a dog fight. His back was bleeding, all down his neck. I ran and got a bag of sugar & a can of Crisco. I poured sugar into the gaping, chewed up flesh, a lot of it, then covered it with Crisco, to seal off the sugar.
    The dog lived, and the next year I had to do the same thing for him and saved him again. The next year, he’d crawled under the house next door, and by the time I found him it was too late. I told his owner to get him to the vet, but Puddin didn’t make it. The owner said to me, after saving his dog twice, why didnt you tell me in time?

  9. HOLLY
    Reply

    WHILE CUTTING A MATT FROM MY DOG’S EAR, I CUT HER EAR. I HATE TO ADMIT IT WAS A LITTLE CHUNCK OFF THE TIP OF HER EAR. I LOST IT, I HELD HER AND SCREAMED FOR MY HUSBAND.HE WENT OUTSIDE AND GOT SOME SPIDER WEB. HE PUT IT OVER THE INJURED PART OF THE EAR AND THE BLOOD STARTED TO CLOT AROUND THE WEB INSTANTLY.

  10. marcia
    Reply

    When my son had nosebleeds that dripped for long periods (as many as 45 minutes as he leaned over the sink), our ENT specialist said that the ingredients in Afrin (or store brand) are vaso-constrictors. He didn’t recommend the medication for stuffy noses because of its harshness, but to put some on a swab and place it into the nostril to stop the bleeding. It worked well.
    He also gave me a recipe for swimmer’s ear that had a mixture of alcohol and white vinegar. The alcohol dries the water, and the vinegar kills the fungus. Use by dropper into the ear after every swim if you tend to get it. It cures existing infections as well. This does not seem to work on otitis media. …from Mama

  11. Carol
    Reply

    We have 13 exotic birds and have to clip toe nails every 3 months. Occasionally we cut too far back and cause bleeding. Birds can bleed to death quickly. We use an ointment called QuikStop and it works in seconds. When my phone rings with a friend who has a bleeder & no ointment, I tell them to use cornstarch or flour. It doesn’t work as fast but it’s a life saver. These remedies can work on 4 legged animals & people too.

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