Learn about navigating life after thrombosis (blood clots) – including prevention, treatment, and life implications – with #ThrombosisTipTuesday, a collection of tips for patients with thrombosis. A nosebleed while on a blood thinner is not usually dangerous, but can be pretty messy! Try to keep your noise moist to avoid a bleed. Vitamins can affect blood thinners! Please speak with your doctor for questions about vitamin/ supplement use. Drinking caffeine before bed can put you at a higher risk for falls – which are especially dangerous to patients on blood thinners! If insurance covers it, INR testing at home can be a quick & convenient way for patients using the warfarin to test their levels! Hair loss & thinning is not uncommon amongst patients on an #anticoagulant (AKA #bloodthinner), but is often an unappreciated side effect. Many falls happen in the dark & on the way to the bathroom. Falling while on blood thinners can be dangerous. Minimize the chance of falling by keeping homes well-lit & limit beverages before bedtime. Risk of getting a blood clot may double or triple after sitting 4+ hours! When traveling for extended periods, do seated stretches to minimize risk. Compression socks can alleviate swelling and discomfort – even if sometimes they’re a pain to put on! Try to leverage friction and put your socks on in the morning to give you a ‘leg up’ with application! Exercise after a blood clot can feel scary, but is an important part to a healthy lifestyle! Aim to move around or walk 30 minutes each day to stay active. It’s common for patients on a blood thinner to experience increased gum bleeding, especially while brushing teeth. Aim to brush carefully to decrease the risk of bleeds! Being dehydrated can increase your risk of a blood clot. Aim to take in water frequently throughout your day to make sure you’re well-hydrated! For patients who experience a nosebleed, do NOT pack a nose with tissue or gauze. Instead, use decongestant spray to dampen a cotton ball and gently insert it into the bleeding nostril. Traveling often means sitting – and sitting for 4+ hours significantly increases your risk for a blood clot. If you’re traveling, try to stay active and hydrated, and don’t be afraid to ask your doctors about anything! Different pain relievers can have different interactions with blood thinners. If taking a pain reliever while on a blood thinner, be sure to first check for any interactions! Having a blood clot is often incredibly stressful. Many practitioners recommend meditation or yoga as a great way to help reduce stress. Supplements can interact with a blood thinner. For patients on warfarin or a DOAC, please alert your doctor if you are on or are starting supplements! For patients who have had a blood clot, compression socks or stockings can help alleviate pain, swelling, & fatigue. You can get fitted at a medical supply store, and often insurance will cover the cost. Patients on a blood thinner often find their cuts take longer than normal to stop bleeding. Try to slow your bleeding by minimizing blood flow to the area. For patients on a blood thinner, please let your doctor know if you’re using CBD or marijuana. Your doctor is not there to judge, and these things can affect the effects of medications. While you aren’t allowed to donate blood while on a blood thinner, sometimes you do need to have blood drawn for other reasons. These tips look at ways to make your blood drawing go as smoothly as possible! Travel can be a risk factor for developing a blood clot, so it’s a good idea to keep blood circulation going and stay hydrated! Patients on a blood thinner will often notice that their menstruation is heavier and more exhausting than when not on a blood thinner. Here are tips for managing these changes. Lately, there’s been a rise in telehealth (aka virtual) appointments. Sometimes it feels like an appointment can can go by very quickly, so it’s important to prioritize your needs on your call with any anticoagulation clinic, or care team. Feeling anxiety or fear after a #blood clot is incredibly common. These tips aim to provide insight for helping to manage anxiety after a clot. Non-medical switching is when a patient’s medication is switched from one prescription to another for non-medical reasons. While it is often time consuming to fight non medical switching, it can be done! If you have a blood clot and are on estrogen-containing contraception, you don’t necessarily need to stop birth control. In many cases, you’re able to continue use alongside a blood thinner. When you’re on a blood thinner, a nuisance bleed (like nose bleeds, bleeding gums, bruising, or minor cuts) is not usually dangerous, but can be annoying. These tips look at ways to avoid nuisance bleeding. A fall while on a blood thinner can be dangerous. Try to minimize risk of falling by taking both environmental and self-action! Being sedentary is a risk factor for having a blood clot. Reduce your risk of clotting by keeping your blood moving! If you’ve had an unprovoked clot, ask your doctor if genetic testing is right for you. Some genetic variations (aka “clotting disorders”) can increase risk of developing a clot & be passed down to children. After a blood clot, coming off of a blood thinner can feel like a big decision. Knowing blood clot signs & symptoms, focusing on prevention, and joining a support group can help patients hit their stride. After a blood clot, many patients are put on a blood thinner, which can cause gums to be sensitive or to bleed. Prevent bleeds by being gentle with teeth cleaning – and mitigate bleeds with table salt & tea bags! While there is no “silver bullet” for completely preventing a blood clot, there are steps patients can take to mitigate risk, including staying active + hydrated and being aware of factors that may cause a clot. For patients on a blood thinner, surgery may mean you need to pause your medication. When preparing for your procedure, please check with your surgery team AND your blood thinner prescribing team to make sure everyone is on the same page about your blood thinner use plan. For patients who have had a blood clot, it is very common to fear having another clot. While you can check for symptoms of a clot yourself, often times you will need to confirm this in a medical setting. If you suspect you have a clot, please see a doctor ASAP – it is always better to be safe than sorry.