Tips for Hemorrhoid Relief
Eat More Fiber to Relieve Hemorrhoids
It seems that over 40% of the adult population who are fifty years old or older will develop hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids (also called piles) are caused by inflammation of the veins in the anal area. The most common symptoms of hemorrhoids are blood on the toilet paper, itching in the anal area and pain during bowel movements usually as a result of constipation. Although hemorrhoids are common, they can also be very annoying and even embarrassing.
Here is a list of some common mistakes that help to contribution to developing hemorrhoids:
- Eating too Much Processed Food: The problem with eating process food is that there isn’t much fiber in this type of food and as a result constipation and other issues can occur which may lead to the development of hemorrhoids. The best way to prevent hemorrhoids from forming, or to help relief them is to stop eating processed sugars and foods.
- Being a Couch Potato: If you are sitting all day at your work and then spend more time on the couch in the evening the added pressure on your bottom can help to contribute to the growth of hemorrhoids. The solution: only sit for an hour at a time and remember to get up and walk around or do some stretches to promote blood flow to the area.
- Using Medications and Creams: Unfortunately using medications and creams can create the same potential problems that eating processed foods does. First of all they aren’t getting to the root of the problem and secondly they can create side-effects.
Most of the hemorrhoid treatments on the market use synthetic chemicals to treat this condition, but keep in mind that the results may only be temporary. Although these treatments might alleviate the pain, the important thing is to eliminate the root cause of this condition and not just the symptoms. Here are some natural ways to get rid of hemorrhoids:
- Introduce more fruits, vegetables and cereals in your diet.
- Soak in a tub of warm water for about ten minutes.
- Applying Aloe Vera gel directly on the affected area to reduce the pain and burning.
- Witch hazel can be used to shrink the swollen veins.
- Butcher's Broom is a very powerful herb that can help with the healing process.
- Pilewort can be taken internally or applied externally to stop the bleeding.
- Dampen the toilet paper with water before using it, to make it softer.
- Reduce your salt intake. Excessive salt in your diet makes you retain fluid and leads to bulging veins.
- Emu oil can alleviate the pain.
- Ice packs on the afflicted area can reduce the swelling.
- Olive oil when applied topically is also an effective home remedy.
So what is the best solution? Try to avoid these common mistakes so you won’t be contributing to the development of hemorrhoids or making them worse if you already have them. And, don’t forget to eat your fiber (fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains)!
Help with Hemorrhoids
Hemorrhoids are veins of the anal region that have become swollen and inflamed, mainly due to excessive straining. They are very common in both men and women. The symptoms usually include: pain, bleeding, burning, inflammation, itching and irritation. Some of the main causes of hemorrhoids are: constipation, heredity, obesity, excessive use of laxatives, lifting heavy objects, diarrhea, pregnancy, sedentary lifestyle, straining during bowel movements and fiber-deprived diet.
Hemorrhoids and Pregnancy
Hemorrhoids are the result of veins or blood vessels around the anus or lower rectal area that have become unusually swollen or inflamed. Some of the more common contributing factors to the development of hemorrhoid are:
- Straining during bowel movements
- Chronic diarrhea
- Anal intercourse
It would not be unusual to develop hemorrhoids during pregnancy particularly during the second stage of labor since pushing puts a strain on the lower area of the body. Pregnancy can lead to hemorrhoids as a result of the following:
- The growing uterus puts extra pressure on the pelvic veins and inferior vena cava which is the vein that receives blood from the lower limbs. Thus, the increased pressure slows the blood flow from the lower half of the body and causes the veins below the uterus to become swollen or inflamed.
- Constipation, which is also common during pregnancy, and the straining that occurs during hard bowel movements is a common cause for hemorrhoids.
- Progesterone - the increase of this hormone in pregnancy causes the walls of the veins to relax which in turn allows for easier swelling. Also, slows down the intestinal tract which causes constipation.
Some steps that can help avoid hemorrhoids are:
- Avoid sitting or standing for long periods of time.
- Avoid constipation by following a high fiber diet.
- Drink at least 8 to 10 glasses of water a day.
- When the urge to have a bowel movement develops don't wait and do not strain.
Often hemorrhoids will disappear after pregnancy. However, if symptoms continue and/or rectal bleeding is noticed consult a physician as soon as possible.
Natural Remedies for Hemorrhoids
Hemorrhoids by definition are an “itching or painful mass of dilated veins in the swollen anal tissue”. Hemorrhoids can be very uncomfortable especially if you need to sit for long periods of time. There are plenty of medications and creams on the market designed to relieve the symptoms of hemorrhoids. Here are a few natural remedies that are also available.
It has been proven that witch hazel works wonders as a great hemorrhoid remedy. It has the ability to reduce swelling because of its astringent nature. When the swelling goes down, the pain becomes much more tolerable during bowel movements. Bowel movements are important to make, even if you don't want to because of the pain it causes. Avoiding a bowel movement will make the stool even harder and more difficult to pass.
Other natural remedies include Red sage which is a Chinese herb. It helps with the proper circulation of blood as the lack of blood circulation can result in increasing hemorrhoids. Vitamin E is a natural antioxidant and helps to protects against free radical damage. Vitamin E can actually help to suppress inflammation internally. Oat straw raises energy level and acts as a mild anti-depressant. It also supports the digestive system by encouraging regularity. Plantains give relief from burning and itching and in addition, L-Arginine may prevent muscle spasms and help to relax the anal muscles.
One of the best remedies you can take is a fiber supplement to counter act solid stool. A diet low in fiber is the number one reason for hemorrhoids. You can loosen up your stool with the additional quantities of fiber added to your diet making it easier and less painful to pass stool. Another remedy that helps to soften stool and relieve the painful symptoms of hemorrhoids is inserting a peeled garlic clove into the anus. Don't worry about its position in the rectal area as your next bowel movement will remove it easily. You will notice a drastic difference when using this method. Another helpful remedy is to apply aloe vera gel to the affected area. This is a natural way to stop the itching and burning.
As you try natural hemorrhoid cures be sure to stay in touch with your doctor and talk to them about your progress. If you would rather avoid prescriptions and medications and would like to use a more natural approach for your body, the above mentioned remedies have proven effective time and time again.
How to Use a Sitz Bath
Sitz comes from the German word sitzen which means to sit. This term describes aptly what you do with a sitz bath, which is to sit in warm water. This is a treatment often prescribed for people with hemorrhoids. Baking soda or epsom salts can also be added to the water to help soothe the area.
A sitz bath is usually a bath where water only covers the hips and buttocks. There are also tubs available that are designed to fit over the toilet and can be filled with water. If you are planning on taking sitz baths in a regular bathtub you will need to sit with your knees bent or place them on the edge of the tub.
You should use the stiz bath for ten to twenty minutes and generally several times a day to ease the discomfort of hemorrhoids. When you are finished with the bath use a clean, soft towel and gently pat the area dry.
Useful Hemorrhoid Links
- Hemorrhoids: Anal and Rectal Disorders: Merck Manual Home Edition
We are dedicated to the highest level of scientific excellence and commit our research to improving human and animal health and the quality of life.
- hemorrhoid: Definition from Answers.com
More about Hemorrhoids: Causes and symptoms Diagnosis Treatment Alternative treatment Prognosis Prevention Resources Hemorrhoids Definition
This health education site explains all you need to know about hemorrhoids, including prevention, self-care, specific recommendations for effective non-prescription treatments, and when to see your doctor.
- Hemorrhoids - Symptoms, Treatment and Prevention
Up-to-the-minute news coverage of national, regional and international news enhanced with audio and video clips and photo galleries - updated 24/7...
Describes the symptoms, diagnosis, and medical and surgical treatments for hemorrhoids.