It is estimated that about 75% of the people in the US will suffer from hemorrhoids symptoms at some point in their life, in particular pregnant women and the elderly. This warrants effective treatment methods that relieve sufferers of their symptoms. A variety of treatments exists and they range from home remedies to medical procedures. To save you the hustle of going through painful and expensive procedures, home remedies are available and that’s what we will look at below.
Hemorrhoids symptoms depend on the type of hemorrhoids so here are the symptoms according to the types:
External hemorrhoids refer to hemorrhoids in the anus and their symptoms include:
- Lumps around the anal area
- Itchiness or irritation in the anal area
- Pain during and after bowel movements
- Discomfort when sitting and passing stool
Internal hemorrhoids are hemorrhoids in the lower region of the rectum. Their symptoms include:
- Painless bleeding that you notice in the toilet or on tissue paper after bowel movements
- They sometimes protrude out of the anus and become known as prolapsed hemorrhoids. Prolapsed hemorrhoids make sitting and passing stool painful and uncomfortable
Thrombosed hemorrhoids are hemorrhoids with blood clots. Their symptoms are as follows:
- Extreme pain due to the build-up of pressure that’s caused by the hindrance of blood flow
- The hemorrhoids eventually burst and this results in a feeling of relief from the pain
Home Hemorrhoids Care – How to Do It Effectively
You can find relief from the symptoms of hemorrhoids using various strategies at home and they include:
There are many ingredients you can find at home that can be used to relieve pain such as aloe vera gel, honey, tea bag, coconut oil, apple cider vinegar, Epsom salts, essential oils and glycerin. They either have anti-inflammatory or soothing effects that help reduce the pain, irritation, and swelling.
Soaking your anus in a warm bath is also an effective pain reliever. Additionally, it improves blood circulation in the rectum and anus so the inflammation reduces. Another home remedy for pain relief is a cold compress. You can make it by wrapping ice in a towel and pressing it on the hemorrhoids for about 15 minutes. It soothes the pain and irritation as well as reduces inflammation by shrinking the blood vessels.
Hemorrhoids may develop because of living an unhealthy lifestyle. Making lifestyle changes will, therefore, treat hemorrhoids and prevent them from developing or recurring. Some of these lifestyle changes include:
Exercises such as yoga, deep breathing, pelvic floor exercises, water aerobics, running, or walking are very good at treating and preventing hemorrhoids. They improve bowel movements, blood circulation to the anal and rectal areas, and strengthen the abdominal and sphincter muscles so that passing stool becomes easier. However, some exercises like heavy lifting, cycling, or horseback riding make hemorrhoids worse so you should avoid them.
Never force yourself to pass stool because it strains the veins in the anus and rectum and hemorrhoids may develop. Instead, wait for the natural urge to go.
Don’t Sit for Too Long
Avoid sitting for long hours without a break because it stretches the anal muscles and they distend and swell in the process. Walk around every now and then to take the pressure off the anus and rectum. You should also avoid taking your phone or reading material to the toilet because it makes you sit for too long.
You can treat or prevent hemorrhoids through the nutrients that you take. Here are some nutrients that you need to take more of to achieve this:
Fiber is responsible for softening stool and adding bulk to it so that it moves down the digestive tract easily. Foods with fiber that you should eat in plenty are wholemeal cereals, vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, and tubers with their skins.
Soluble fiber needs water in order to dissolve in it and make a gel-like substance that softens the stool. You should drink plenty of water and eat foods with high water content such as soups, vegetables, and fruits to treat and prevent hemorrhoids.
You can purchase fiber supplements such as Psyllium husk and Methylcellulose to soften your stool and prevent constipation, the leading cause of hemorrhoids. They come in form of capsules, powder, and liquids that you take orally.
Oils and Other Treatments
Essential oils have anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antimicrobial properties that are very good for hemorrhoids. They soothe the pain, irritation, and reduce swelling. Some of these oils include hemorrhoids formula oil, tea tree oil, frankincense oil, cypress oil, peppermint oil, myrtle oil, and clove oil. Read more here. Do not apply them directly to the hemorrhoids because they are potent and may cause irritation; dilute them in carrier oils like jojoba or castor oils.
Other treatments of hemorrhoids are medical procedures that are done to remove them. These procedures include cryotherapy, cauterization, rubber band ligation, hemorrhoidectomy, sclerotherapy, and stapling.
When to See a Doctor
When rectal bleeding goes beyond 10 minutes and you start feeling lightheaded, you should seek immediate medical attention. If you also notice a change in your bowel habits or the consistency and color of your stool, see a doctor. These could be signs of more serious diseases like colorectal cancer or bowel disease.
When you follow the right instructions in using home remedies to treat hemorrhoids, you will start to notice a positive change in a few days. It will also take anywhere between a few days to a few weeks for them to disappear completely depending on how severe your condition is.