How To Deal With Hemorrhoids?
Written and reviewed by
MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, MS - General Surgery
General Surgeon, Secunderabad
What is hemorrhoid?
Hemorrhoid (piles) is a condition where the veins in the lowest part of rectum and anus get swollen.
How to deal with it?
Following are the most effective measures to reduce the suffering from the piles:
- Placing a towel soaked in cold water on the piles relieves the pain, irritation, and burning around the anus.
- Protruded hemorrhoids can be pushed back into the rectum, using a lubricating jelly, while bathing.
- A fiber supplement, which includes Metamucil, Citrucel, or Fiber Con, and a fiber-rich food, such as broccoli, beans, wheat, oat bran, whole-grain foods, and fresh fruits, should be included in the diet. Fibrous food softens the stool and makes it easier to pass, thereby reducing pressure on hemorrhoids.
- Exercise will help by stimulating the bowel function and by improving constipation. Aerobic exercises, such as brisk walking, jogging, cycling, skipping for 20-30 minutes a day, at least for 5 days per week, should be included.
- Do not strain. Straining for the stool leads to pressure on the hemorrhoids and causes worsening of the symptom.
- Don’t wait for a convenient time. Immediately pass the stool when there is urging. This stool can back up, leading to increased pressure and will require straining to pass in future. Keep a fixed time for passing stool, such as after a meal, or after waking up, and sit on the toilet seat for a few minutes. This will help to establish a regular bowel habit.
- Take a regular sitz bath. A sitz bath is a warm water bath for the buttocks and hips. It helps to reduce itching, irritation, and spasms of the sphincter muscle. A 20-minute sitz bath after each bowel movement, two or three times a day, will help reduce burning and itching after passing stool.
- Topical medication, such as creams containing a local anesthetic agent, can be used to relieve the pain. They are applied before passing the stools. Anti-inflammatory home remedies, such as Witch hazel, aloe vera, and a warm bath with Epsom salt helps reduce symptoms of piles.
- Using a toilet paper after a bowel movement can aggravate existing hemorrhoids, as wipes which have alcohol, perfume, or irritants cause more irritation and worsens symptom. Use wipes which are medicated, such as wipes with aloe vera or witch hazel.
- Stool softeners or fiber supplements help reduce constipation, make the stool softer, and make it easier to have quick, painless bowel movements. Oral painkillers can be used to relieve the pain, such as aspirin and ibuprofen.
- When an external hemorrhoid is very painful due to a blood clot, surgery is usually indicated in order to relieve the symptoms.
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