Hemorrhoids are enlarged and swollen blood vessels that develop in the lower part of the rectum and anus. It is not life-threatening but literally a pain in the backside. It usually affects adults aged 45 to 65 years old, but young people and children may experience as well.
Experts say that hemorrhoids form because of increased pressure in the lower rectum. So, maintaining the health of the body’s rectum and anus is important. If not, it will lead to health problems. The health problems are not only will hinder proper function but also cause pain and discomfort as well.
The cause of hemorrhoids is still unclear. However, the expert believes that this condition appears when increased pressure in the lower abdomen or rectum stretches the veins. It leads to bulging and swelling of these blood vessels. Here are the factors that may cause hemorrhoids:
- Straining during the bowel movement
- Chronic constipation or diarrhea
- Anal intercourse
- Family history with hemorrhoids
- Sitting for a long period
- A cough and vomiting continuously
- Often lifting heavy loads
- Low-fiber diet
- Liver cirrhosis
The symptoms are generally mild but catching the early warning signs of hemorrhoids is vital to lessen the pain and treat these swollen veins as soon as possible. Here are the common symptoms of this condition:
- Extreme itching, irritation, and pain around the anus
- Fecal leakage
- Blood on tissue, stool or toilet bowl after a bowel movement
- The appearance of itchy or painful lumps or swelling near the anus
- Painful bowel movement
It is important to know the internal and external hemorrhoid because they are diagnosed differently. Internal hemorrhoids are small swellings in the blood vessels that are on the top of the anal canal or on the inner wall of the rectum. The external hemorrhoids appear at the bottom of the anal canal, near the anal canal.
There are numerous ways to treat and eliminate hemorrhoids. The treatment depends on the location. Treating without surgery will be very painful but if it grows at or below the dentate line, the area can detect pain. So, surgery will be recommended. Here are some treatments for hemorrhoids:
Dietary Changes and Self-Maintenance
If the hemorrhoids are caused by constipation, you should try to keep the stool soft and you can defecate regularly by increasing the fiber intake in your diets such as consuming whole grains, cereals, fruits, and vegetables. It is better to drink plenty of water and avoid the consumption of caffeinated beverages such as tea, coffee, and soda.
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Treating at Home
Hemorrhoids can treat at home using any of the following techniques.
- Try a sitz bath or opt for a warm soak
- Use ice bags, warm tea bags or witch hazel compress on the rectal area
- Keep the rectal area clean
- Use a donut pillow if you must sit down
- Refrain from scratching the affected area
- Use a bidet instead of dry toilet paper when wiping after a bowel movement
- Avoid anti-itching creams or lotions
- Do not pass on the urge to defecate
If the dietary changes and medication do not affect, the doctor will refer to a specialist. If the hemorrhoids are found to be above the dentate line, non-surgical procedures such as binding or sclerotherapy will be suggested. There are three types of non-surgical methods that can get rid of it.
- Rubber band ligation. A rubber band is wrapped at the base of hemorrhoid, essentially cutting off the blood flow. The constriction causes hemorrhoid to shrink and fall off in a week.
- Sclerotherapy. It is a chemical solution which is injected directly into internal hemorrhoid or in the area around it that causes hemorrhoid to shrink because blood flow is prevented.
- Infrared coagulation. After applying a local anesthetic on the area, an infrared coagulation device is used to heat hemorrhoid, burning the tissues, for a brief period that causes a scar to form that blocks blood flow to hemorrhoid.