How to Treat Your Painful Hemorrhoids Naturally for Fast Relief
I can understand your embarrassment while trying to disclose your hemorrhoid condition to your doctor. After all, such a health issue affects one of the most private parts of your body.
Nevertheless, you should not shy of it since you are not alone in such a health condition.
An influential person of the old, Napoleon Bonaparte, at one point in his life, had hemorrhoids too. One historian author associates the loss of "Waterloo Battle" to a bout of hemorrhoids Napoleon suffered at the time. Hemorrhoids prevented the warrior from riding his horse to the battle and hence the loss.
Hemorrhoids are a collective experience to many and especially with the aged. Approximately 1 in every 20 Canadians has hemorrhoids. 50% of hemorrhoids cases happen to people aged 50 years and above.
What are Hemorrhoids?
Hemorrhoids are swollen and sometimes distended anal blood vessels. They can be swollen veins or arteries which develop either internally or externally. Another common name for hemorrhoids is piles.
Hemorrhoids cushions are natural body structures in the anorectal. The buffer, which is also called sinusoids, comprises smooth anal muscles, connective tissues, and blood vessels.
The vascular vessels can dilate and distort due to bowel movement, body pressure, or other constraints. Any of these occurrences would cause swollen hemorrhoids and hence the condition.
The hemorrhoids can over-stretch and bulge by collecting blood, which forms clot or thrombus. Such hemorrhoids can be painful and uncomfortable when touched, especially when passing a stool or sitting.
The consolation is that you can use simple home remedies to treat your hemorrhoids naturally and effectively.
There are three types of hemorrhoids, depending on how they occur and the location. The three are:
How can you know that you have hemorrhoids, especially when they develop internally? Hemorrhoids have different symptoms due to the location or the type.
Symptoms of Hemorrhoids
The following are some of the indications that you have hemorrhoids according to the types:
The internal hemorrhoids develop inside your rectum, which prevents you from touching or feeling them. Unlike the external hemorrhoids that cause extreme pain, internal hemorrhoids develop in an area with scarcely pain-sensing nerves, causing no pain.
However, the common symptom of internal hemorrhoids is bleeding. You will most likely notice bright red blood on the tissue after passing your stool or even in the toilet.
A strained stool can cause protruding hemorrhoids through the rectum, which can be very painful and uncomfortable. You can feel the protruding hemorrhoids, but you can't push them back inside, which may pose problems, especially when sitting.
Symptoms of Internal Hemorrhoids
Protruding internal hemorrhoids may irritate due to some tiny particles of collected stool or some mucus.
The lump of protruding internal hemorrhoids is different from a thrombosed hemorrhoid. The peeking lump of internal hemorrhoids would be rubbery, while the thrombosed one would be hard and dark bluish.
External hemorrhoids cause the veins around the anus to protrude out. The external hemorrhoids are more painful and sensitive than the internal ones. The sensitivity of the outer hemorrhoids can cause itchiness, which may lead to cracking the skin when scratching, leading to bleeding.
This type of hemorrhoids become very uncomfortable and especially when sitting.
Symptoms of external hemorrhoids include:
- Itchiness around the anus
- Discomfort especially when sitting
- Bleeding and swelling around the anal area
A thrombosed hemorrhoid is a lump on the anal outer region containing blood clots that cause grievous pain and irritation. It appears as a dark-blue colored lump because it contains blood clots.
However, the clot can disappear after some time to leave behind a protruding sagging skin.
Thrombosed Hemorrhoid Symptoms
Some of the thrombosed hemorrhoid symptoms are:
- Anal swelling
- Inflammation and severe pain
- A protruding hard-to-touch lump containing a blood clot
Causes of Hemorrhoid
Your blood vessels lining your rectoanal region or hemorrhoid cushion become dilated and inflamed due to increased pressure, especially when passing a hard stool. Such strain can lead to the development of hemorrhoids.
The dilated vessel then may slip from its position and sometimes protrude through the anal opening. Unless inflamed, the internal hemorrhoids, in most cases, are painless.
Some of the common causes of hemorrhoids include:
- Constipation and hence straining during bowel movement
- Heavy lifting which can cause physical exertion
- Baby movement and positioning pressure during pregnancy
- Strained delivery during childbirth
How to Prevent Hemorrhoids
People with a high risk of hemorrhoids would face challenges trying to prevent the condition. Nevertheless, it is still possible to do it using the following tips. You can either prevent hemorrhoids or reduce the symptoms:
High Fiber Foods
Eating foods containing high fiber, such as whole grains, vegetables, and fruits, would help prevent constipation. Constipation is the primary cause of hemorrhoids.
High fiber foods increase bulk in the stool to soften it for easy release. When introducing high fiber foods to your diet, you should take it slow to avoid other digestive issues such as gas or bloating.
For reasons, you might fail to get enough high fiber foods. If that's the case, you can go for supplements. Talk to your dietician to help you choose the suitable fiber supplements for your situation.
Drinking Plenty of Water
Drinking water is not an option but a must. At least, drink eight glasses of water daily to soften your stool, especially if you are on a high fiber diet or supplements to avoid constipation.
Do Not Ignore the Urge
Obey your urge to pass stool immediately without delay. The longer the delay, the drier the bowel and the harder to pass it out.
Building your stool by delaying passing it out would eventually strain you to remove it when you are ready to do so or when you think you are in the right place.
Avoid Strained Stool
Passing a stool should be done with ease. Avoid pushing to force it out while long-holding your breath. Straining to pass your stool can quickly increase pressure on the rectoanal veins and therefore cause hemorrhoids.
Form a bowel movement schedule such as immediately you wake up or after a specific mealtime. It would be easy to pass stool once you form a scheduled time to sit on the toilet.
Avoid Long Sitting Time
Long periods of sitting and especially in the toilet, can increase pressure on rectoanal veins. Avoid the habit of reading while sitting on the toilet to finish your toilet business first and fast.
To help you pass stool without straining or with less pain, you can try a squatting position. Step on a seat or any high-raised object while sitting on the toilet to prop up your legs in a squatting position. Sitting that way helps to relax your sphincter muscles to ease bowel movement.
Exercise can help you to keep fit while loosening your stool to prevent constipation.
7 Common Home Remedies for Hemorrhoids
How can you treat your hemorrhoid naturally using simple methods?
Before embarking on any of these natural remedies, seek a professional opinion to confirm that the problem is hemorrhoid and not anything else. Hemorrhoid is one cause of rectal bleeding and hence the reason to rule out other causes through rectal examination.
The following are some of the remedies you can use at home to treat hemorrhoids.
1. Sitting in a Sitz
Sitz bath is an age-old home procedure for relieving most of the anal conditions such as fissure, relaxing sphincter pressure, inflamed hemorrhoids, and others. Sitz is a word borrowed from the German word 'sitzen,' which means 'to sit.'
The method entails sitting either in a small plastic tub with warm water. The plastic tub is specially designed to fit on a toilet seat. You can purchase the plastic sitz tub from a medical equipment supplier near you.
You can also use your usual bathtub as a sitz tub. Run warm water to at least cover your hips when sitting for a sitz bath.
You can take your sitz bath twice or thrice in a day that lasts 20 minutes or so per bath, depending on your condition's seriousness. Remember to pat dry the anal area gently after bathing to avoid further bruising.
Adding Epsom salt to your sitz bath can help ease itching (if any) and boost blood circulation to relieve hemorrhoid blood clots.
2. Fresh Aloe Vera or Aloe Vera Gel
Aloe Vera contains astringent properties that help tissue contraction to inhibit any discharge from the affected anal area and keeping it dry to aid healing. Even though you can source Aloe Vera products from your herbs shop near you, using an organic fresh Aloe Vera stem would be the best choice.
You need to have medical gloves and a clean bowl to squeeze out Aloe Vera juice. Follow the steps to guide you on how to do it:
- Wear your medical gloves to maintain hygiene
- Extract Aloe Vera gel by snapping the stem and squeezing it out into the bowl
- Apply and massage the gel gently on the affected area using your gloved fingers
- Leave the gel to sit after application for about 15 minutes before washing it off gently
- While being careful not to cause more harm, pat dry the area gently
3. Epsom Salt in Glycerin
You should not substitute Epsom salt with your kitchen table salt as both are quite different. Your table salt may not give you the same results as Epsom salt.
Prepare a paste of Epsom Salt and glycerin to apply on the affected area for hemorrhoid relief.
Follow the simple steps to prepare your paste:
- Place two tablespoons of Epsom salt in a bowl
- Mix Epsom salt with two tablespoons of organic vegetable glycerin to form a paste
- Using medical gloves, apply the paste direct to cover the affected area. You can also use a gauze pad to place the mixture on the affected area.
- Either way, leave the paste to sit on the affected area for about 20 minutes
- Wipe it off gently
- Repeat this application every four hours until you are free of pain
4. Witch Hazel
Witch hazel, which contains tannins, is an old home remedy for reducing inflammation and stopping bleeding. Tannins speed up the clotting of blood and hence helps to prevent internal hemorrhoid bleeding. Tannins also help in tightening skin and thus healing.
It can also be useful in hemorrhoid relief from itching, pain, and swelling.
Use witch hazel in its liquid form for best results. After wearing your medical gloves, carefully apply the liquid directly to the affected area for your healing process.
5. Ice Packs
You can relieve the excruciating inflammation pain by applying cold packs to the affected area. You can do that while sitting in the toilet or ask someone to help you when lying face down.
Applying ice packs is the quickest way to numb hemorrhoid flares and provide fast relief.
Hemorrhoid Complementary and Alternative Therapy
There are various alternative treatments for heart health issues. However, you may require consulting your health practitioner for the best therapy and advice. The following are some of the recommendations from our natural health practitioner, Yvonne Dollar Perc.
Nature's Sunshine has combined six herbs and nutrients that work to fortify and nourish the overall health of veins. Vari-Gone is used in Herbal Medicine to help treat varicose veins, chronic venous insufficiency, and associated symptoms. One ingredient, Horse Chestnut, is traditionally used in Herbal Medicine to help treat hemorrhoids.
Used in traditional herbal medicine for symptomatic relief of itching and burning associated with hemorrhoids and to relieve symptoms of discomfort and heaviness of legs related to minor venous circulatory disturbances.
Despite how scary hemorrhoids may sound, they are easy to treat and manage. Sometimes, you don't have to do anything as they can heal on their own.
Using the given home remedies can help you in treating hemorrhoids. However, some cases may be severe to require professional expertise.
If there are no changes after applying your home remedies, you can arrange for an immediate appointment with your medical personnel.
Rectal bleeding is one symptom you should not ignore, and especially if it is persistence. Your doctor may suggest a couple of examinations to determine the cause of bleeding.
You can also engage our Natural Health Practitioner with questions for real-time answers. Ask Yvonne is a forum to discuss your health issue for free. Please open the link to fill out the questionnaire to our Natural Health practitioner and Master Herbalist, Yvonne Dollard Perc.
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This article is intended for educational purposes and the information contained within is not intended to treat, diagnose or cure any disease or health problem. Please seek appropriate medical attention for any health complaints. We cannot take responsibility for your health care decisions. Our intent is only to offer health information to help you with your search for better health.