Hemorrhoids are inflamed veins in and around the anal and rectal regions. They occur when these veins are pressed to a point that blood flow is hindered which can be caused by straining too much in the toilet, among other reasons. This article will tackle concerns like are hemorrhoids contagious, how do you get them, how do you prevent them, and what treatment options are available.
Are Hemorrhoids Contagious?
You may be wondering how you got hemorrhoids and whether they can be spread from one person to another. You can rest assured that hemorrhoids are not contagious. They cannot be transmitted from one person to another through sexual intercourse or any other form of contact. Hemorrhoids develop due to pressure on the vessels in the anus and rectum.
How Do You Get Hemorrhoids?
Hemorrhoids may develop because of a number of reasons. They include:
This is one of the main causes of hemorrhoids. This is because straining while moving bowels puts so much pressure on the veins in the anus and rectum that they end up swelling.
Diarrhea that lasts a long time also strains the blood vessels in the anus and rectum and leads to the development of hemorrhoids.
Aging causes the wearing out of most organs in the body including the anus and rectum. The tissue that is found between them that provides support weakens as you get older. As a result, any pressure placed on the rectal and anal area could lead to the swelling of blood vessels. This is why hemorrhoids are very common in older people and they affect 50% of people above the age of 50 years.
If you have a family history of hemorrhoids, you are at risk of developing them. Hemorrhoids can be passed down in bloodlines.
The human body can only support body weight up to a certain point. The moment this threshold is crossed, problems begin. One of these problems is that blood vessels, especially on the lower parts of the body are strained. Some of these veins include those in the anus and rectum so hemorrhoids may develop.
As a fetus grows in the womb, more and more pressure is placed on blood vessels in the lower regions of the body. That’s why many pregnant women develop swollen feet towards the end of the pregnancy. The baby weight sits on a major blood vessel that supplies blood between the heart and the lower parts of the body. Hemorrhoids are, therefore, common in pregnant women.
Another reason hemorrhoids are common in pregnant women is that pregnancy hormones lead to the abnormal swelling of blood vessels in many parts of the body.
What Can I Do to Prevent Hemorrhoids?
To make sure you never have to deal with hemorrhoids, you need to take steps to prevent them. Here are ways you can do that:
Eat More Fibre
Fiber is very important in boosting digestive functions and bowel movements. Soluble fiber softens stool while insoluble fiber adds bulk to it so it has an easier journey down the gut and out of the anus. Foods that you should have plenty of in your diet because of their rich fiber content include nuts, legumes, fruits, vegetables, wholemeal cereals, and wholemeal flour.
Drink More Water
Water helps in softening stool so that you don’t struggle during bowel movements. Hence, you have to take plenty of water to prevent the occurrence of hemorrhoids. Drink between 6 and 8 glasses of water daily.
Avoid Straining in the Toilet
Don’t force yourself to pass stool; wait for the natural urge to come. When it does come, don’t delay otherwise it will harden and cause trouble passing it.
Exercising stimulates digestion and bowel movements. Exercise regularly and you’ll have no trouble passing stool.
Avoid Sitting in the Toilet for Too Long
Sitting in the toilet for too long stretches out the anal area and causes the blood vessels to bulge out.
Take the above steps to prevent constipation and stop taking your mobile phone or other gadgets to the toilet to avoid taking longer than necessary. Read more about self-help.
What are the Treatment Options for Hemorrhoids?
Hemorrhoids can be treated at home or using medical procedures.
A sitz bath is a small plastic bath that you can fill with warm water. You can then sit in it to soothe pain and irritation. It also reduces swelling by improving blood circulation.
Pressing an ice pack on hemorrhoids will shrink the swollen blood vessels, reduce pain, and soothe irritation.
Aloe vera gel extracted straight from the plant’s leaf has excellent soothing effects. Applying it directly to the hemorrhoids will help with the pain, itching, and swelling.
Pharmacies sell creams, ointments, and suppositories you can use on hemorrhoids. They are made with compounds that reduce swelling, itching, and pain.
The H-Hemorrhoids Formula is a highly effective product you can use on all four types of hemorrhoids. It will provide you with fast pain relief and shrinkage of hemorrhoids. It is made with natural homeopathic ingredients so they won’t cause you harmful side effects.
This is a surgical procedure where incisions are made on the hemorrhoids so that the inflamed blood vessels can be removed. It’s a painful procedure so the surgeon puts you on anesthesia before performing it.
This treatment involves the doctor injecting the hemorrhoid with a chemical that shrinks it. Sclerotherapy only causes mild discomfort so doesn’t require anesthesia.
This procedure is done on prolapsed hemorrhoids which are internal hemorrhoids that have protruded out of the anus. The surgeon uses a surgical stapling device to staple the hemorrhoid to its original place in the rectum. This cuts off its blood supply so it eventually shrinks.
Hemorrhoids can be a real menace to deal with but these treatment options give you a way out so that you can finally achieve a hemorrhoid-free life!