The Symptoms of Hemorrhoids
Hemorrhoids are basically swollen veins in the rectum and anus that lead to pain and discomfort.
The reason hemorrhoids occur may be due to straining during bowel movements, being overweight or obese and during pregnancy but often the actual cause is unknown.
Three out of four adults will have hemorrhoids from time to time.
What are the symptoms of hemorrhoids?
The symptoms - and the signs - of hemorrhoids usually depend on the type of hemorrhoid being dealt with.
One type is external hemorrhoids
These appear under the skin around the anus and the symptoms include:
- Itching or irritation in the anal region
- Pain or discomfort
- Swelling around the anus
Another type is internal hemorrhoids
These appear inside the rectum, making it difficult to see or feel them. In addition, they rarely cause discomfort. However, straining or irritation when passing stool can cause:
- Painless bleeding during bowel movements. You might notice small amounts of bright red blood on your toilet tissue or in the toilet.
- An internal hemorrhoid may sometimes push through the anal opening (known as a prolapsed or protruding hemorrhoid) and this can lead to pain and irritation.
A third type is thrombosed hemorrhoids
This type is caused if blood pools in an external hemorrhoid and forms a clot (thrombus). Symptoms can include:
- Severe pain.
- A hard lump close to the anus.
Should you consult a medical practitioner when you have hemorrhoids?
If you have bleeding during bowel movements or you have hemorrhoids that don't improve after a week of home care, it could be wise to consult your doctor.
What can you do at home to take care of hemorrhoids and their symptoms?
We share our top tips...
- Add plenty of fiber to your diet along with fluids to help soften stools, make them easier to eliminate while reducing the pressure on the hemorrhoids. Suggestions for high fiber food include lots of berries, avocados, beans, wheat and oat bran, wholegrain foods and plenty of fresh fruit. Gradually increase your fiber foods to avoid any bloating or gas while at the same time including plenty of liquids.
- Regular and brisk exercise is also important. This could be a moderate aerobic workout or walking thirty minutes a day. Such exercise will help to stimulate bowel function.
- Get into the habit of regular trips to the toilet, preferably have a set time each day (for example after a meal) to sit on the toilet for a few minutes. But be careful not to sit for too long. In between, don't put off a trip to the bathroom if the time is right.
- A sitz bath is a great home remedy - namely a warm water bath for the buttocks and hips. Sitting in this warm water will help relieve any itching or irritation. You can use a regular bath tub or just a basin big enough to sit in. Try to use this remedy for twenty minutes after each bowel movement as well as another two or three sessions each day. Never be rough in drying the area, just a pat dry.
- Use witch hazel wipes to soothe the area while a small ice pack can help to reduce pain and swelling when placed against the affected area.
- Always sit on a cushion rather than a hard surface. A doughnut cushion is another suggestion. Avoiding hard surfaces for sitting helps to reduce the swelling of hemorrhoids while preventing new ones.
- The ultimate natural remedy is H-Hemorrhoids Formula providing the perfect treatment for the symptoms of both internal and external hemorrhoids. It is easily applied topically to the area, helping to provide fast pain relief and shrink those unwanted hemorrhoids by reducing swelling.
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hemorrhoidcentersamerica.com/anal-rectal-problems/anal-itching/. (Accessed 1 October, 2021).
Hemorrhoids and what to do about them. (2018).
health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/hemorrhoids_and_what_to_do_about_them. (Accessed 1 October, 2021).