If you have suffered from back pain at some point in your life, you know all too well how debilitating it can be. It’s one of the most common complaints that doctors receive and a leading cause of disability. Today, we will be answering the question ‘Can hemorrhoids cause back pain?’ as well as how you can treat hemorrhoids from the comfort of your home.
What is Back Pain?
Back pain is simply a feeling of physical discomfort on the back or anywhere on the spine, from the neck to the hips. Approximately 75-85% of Americans experience some form of back pain in their lifetime but its severity varies. Most cases of back pain are temporary and they improve without having to undergo surgery.
What are Hemorrhoids?
Hemorrhoids are swollen or distended blood vessels in the anus and rectum. They affect about half of the people over the age of 50 years.
Back Pain Symptoms and Causes
The most obvious symptom of back pain is an ache or pain anywhere on the back that sometimes goes all the way down to your buttocks and legs. The pain can range from mild to being so painful that it’s disabling. Back pain may also be characterized by pain whenever you stand up and diminished motion or flexibility when stretching your back .
Your back is made up of muscles, disks, ligaments, tendons, and bones. If anything is wrong with these components, you may experience back pain. They can be damaged as a result of injury, strain, medical conditions, poor posture, among other things. The following are some of the commonest causes of back pain:
Staining occurs because of lifting heavy objects, over-activity, or making sudden, awkward movements. These activities result in a feeling of stiffness or soreness.
Arthritis is a medical condition where the joints are inflamed. It leads to the narrowing of the space around the spinal cord which causes lower back pain.
Disks are the tissues in between your bones in the spine that cushion them against rubbing against each other. When they rupture or bulge, they press on nerves which results in back pain.
Poor posture when sitting or sleeping can result in back pain. This includes hunching while using your computer or sleeping on a mattress that doesn’t keep the spine straight. Standing or sitting for long periods also causes back pain.
Hemorrhoids Symptoms and Causes
The symptoms of hemorrhoids are such as:
- Pain in the anus especially during and after bowel movements
- Itchiness and irritation in the anal region
- Painless rectal bleeding
- Hard lumps in the anal area
Hemorrhoids develop when the blood vessels in the anus and rectum are put under so much strain that proper blood flow is hindered. This can happen because of chronic constipation and diarrhea, pregnancy, obesity, heavy-lifting, and deterioration of the tissues in the anus and rectum due to age.
Can Hemorrhoids Cause Back Pain?
While there is no scientific evidence backing the claims, speculations about how hemorrhoids and back pain are connected have been raised. The first link between hemorrhoids and back pain is stress. Stress indirectly causes hemorrhoids by causing digestive problems. Back pain, on the other hand, is one way your body alerts you that your immune system is weak as a result of stress. Therefore, when you’re stressed back pain and hemorrhoids may occur concurrently.
Another speculation is that hemorrhoids cause the excess draining of blood throughout the body including the muscles of the back. When these muscles don’t have enough blood, they may ache. The last assumption is that hemorrhoids appear to cause back pain because of their proximity to the back. As aforementioned, one of the symptoms of back pain is shooting pain that sometimes reaches the buttocks. This can result in confusion between pain coming from hemorrhoids and that from the back.
Therefore, hemorrhoids do not conclusively cause back pain.
Hemorrhoids Home-Based Treatment
You don’t have to seek medical treatment for hemorrhoids. You can use easily available ingredients to get relief at home. Once hemorrhoids are not giving you uncomfortable days and sleepless nights, they only need a few weeks to clear up.
Fill your bathtub with warm water and soak your anus for 15-20 minutes. The warm water improves blood circulation so the inflammation reduces. It also soothes the pain and irritation as well as cleans the area so that infections don’t slow down healing.
Tea leaves contain tannic acid which is a natural anti-inflammatory agent. It also promotes blood clotting so it will curb bleeding. Dip a tea bag into warm water and press it on your hemorrhoids until you feel relief.
Wrap ice cubes inside a clean towel and sit on it for about 15 minutes. Ice not only shrinks the swollen veins but also relieves the pain and itchiness.
Sitting for long periods and putting additional pressure on the hemorrhoids only makes things worse. Lie down with your legs up for about 30 minutes every once in a while to relieve the pressure and improve blood circulation.
Witch hazel is a powerful anti-inflammatory natural product that you can use to shrink swollen blood vessels. Dip a cotton ball in it and apply it to your hemorrhoids. It’s also found as an ingredient in soaps, pads, and ointments that you can also use to find relief. Find it here.
Since hemorrhoids don’t cause back pain for sure, taking care of the hemorrhoids may not alleviate the back pain. Therefore, if your back pain doesn’t seem to be going away or is interfering with your ability to get daily tasks done, see a doctor for further assistance.