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Facial Injuries (cont.)

Check Your Symptoms

Home Treatment

Home treatment may help treat problems and prevent complications after an injury to your face.

First aid for bleeding

Facial injuries can bleed a lot even if they are minor injuries. Stop any bleeding from the noseClick here to see an illustration., mouth, or face so you can see what the injury is. Crying increases blood flow to the face and can make a nosebleed or facial bleeding worse. If your injured child is crying, speak in a quiet, relaxed manner to soothe him or her.

First aid for a suspected broken bone

  • Do not move misshapen facial bones. It may make an injury worse, increase bleeding, or cause more problems.
  • Apply an ice or cold pack immediately to prevent or minimize swelling.
  • Seek medical evaluation and treatment.

Measures to reduce pain, swelling, and bruising

  • Use ice. Cold will reduce pain and swelling. Apply an ice or cold pack immediately to prevent or minimize swelling. Apply the ice or cold pack for 10 to 20 minutes, 3 or more times a day. After 48 to 72 hours, if swelling is gone, apply warmth to the area that hurts.
  • Keep your head elevated, even while you sleep. This will help reduce swelling.
  • For the first 48 hours, avoid things that might increase swelling, such as hot showers, hot tubs or hot packs, or drinking alcohol or hot fluids.
  • Do not take aspirin or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for the first 24 hours. Aspirin prolongs the clotting time of blood and may cause more nose or facial bleeding.
  • Eat soft foods and cold foods and fluids to reduce jaw and mouth pain. Avoid hot foods or beverages, which may increase swelling around the mouth.

Do not smoke. Smoking slows healing because it decreases blood supply and delays tissue repair. For more information, see the topic Quitting Smoking.

Medicine you can buy without a prescription
Try a nonprescription medicine to help treat your fever or pain:

Talk to your child's doctor before switching back and forth between doses of acetaminophen and ibuprofen. When you switch between two medicines, there is a chance your child will get too much medicine.

Safety tips
Be sure to follow these safety tips when you use a nonprescription medicine:
  • Carefully read and follow all directions on the medicine bottle and box.
  • Do not take more than the recommended dose.
  • Do not take a medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to it in the past.
  • If you have been told to avoid a medicine, call your doctor before you take it.
  • If you are or could be pregnant, do not take any medicine other than acetaminophen unless your doctor has told you to.
  • Do not give aspirin to anyone younger than age 20 unless your doctor tells you to.

Symptoms to watch for during home treatment

Call your doctor if any of the following symptoms occur during home treatment:

  • Numbness or tingling develop.
  • Changes in vision develop, such as double vision or blurring.
  • Signs of infection develop.
  • Pain and swelling continue or get worse.
  • Symptoms become more severe or frequent.
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