Hemorrhoids or piles are the source of so much misery for 1 in every 20 Americans so solutions that can relieve the symptoms really come in hand. Hemorrhoids refer to swollen blood vessels in the rectum and anus that cause pain, itchiness, bleeding, and general discomfort while passing stool or sitting. Fortunately, natural remedies are available to treat these symptoms and give you much-needed relief. The following is an overview of natural hemorrhoid remedies.
Why Do Hemorrhoids Occur?
Vessels in the anus and rectum can swell because of many reasons, causing hemorrhoids. These include:
Excess Body Weight
When you are overweight or obese, the lower part of the body has to bear more weight than it’s meant to. This affects the vessels in these regions including those of the anus and rectum and they may end up swelling.
Constipation is the commonest cause of hemorrhoids. This is because it makes you strain while passing stool so the veins in the rectum and anus are put under so much pressure they swell up.
The same way straining to pass stool strains the blood vessels of the anus and rectum so does passing stool too frequently. Chronic diarrhea also forces you to wipe too often, irritating the veins of the anus further.
Pregnancy and Childbirth
Hemorrhoids are a very common problem during pregnancy and after childbirth. It mostly happens in the third trimester when the fetus’s weight is at its heaviest. The fetus rests on a major blood vessel that facilitates blood flow between the heart and the lower parts of the body. Therefore, the vessels in the anus, rectum and even the legs become engorged with blood. However, you shouldn’t worry too much about these kinds of hemorrhoids because they disappear soon after childbirth.
The process of vaginal childbirth is very strenuous on the blood vessels of the rectum and anus so hemorrhoids commonly develop afterward.
Half of the adults above the age of 50 have hemorrhoids for a very good reason. Muscles and tissues are usually worn out at this point. Thus, when those in the anus and rectum are subjected to pressure through constipation, their veins easily distend.
Natural Hemorrhoid Remedies
Did you know that you can treat hemorrhoids from the comfort of your house? Well, you can because the remedies consist of ingredients you can’t possibly miss in your kitchen or the nearest drugstore. Here are the various remedies you can use to relieve hemorrhoid symptoms:
Aloe Vera Gel
Aloe vera gel is one of the most effective natural treatments for inflammation and pain. It will soothe the pain, irritation, and reduce the swelling of hemorrhoids. However, you have to ensure you’re not allergic to it before using it.
Witch hazel is an anti-inflammatory remedy that you can purchase from your local pharmacy. It not only soothes the pain and irritation but also reduces the swelling of hemorrhoids.
You can make a cold compress by wrapping ice in a towel or a clean piece of cloth. You should then press it on the hemorrhoids for about 15 minutes. This will significantly reduce the pain and inflammation because it contracts the blood vessels.
Virgin coconut oil is a powerful moisturizer and for this reason, it’s very good at relieving pain and irritation. It can, therefore, be used to relieve hemorrhoid symptoms.
A sitz bath is a shallow bowl you can fit on your toilet and fill with warm water. Sitting in the warm water after bowel movements soothes the pain and itchiness. It also improves blood circulation in the anus and rectum and this helps to reduce inflammation.
Pharmacies have anti-hemorrhoid medication that’s made out of anti-inflammatory ingredients like hydrocortisone to soothe the pain and reduce swelling. You can also buy painkillers to help with the pain.
What to Avoid
Preventing hemorrhoids is far much better than going through the trouble of treating them. The following are what you should avoid doing to prevent their development:
Delaying Going to the Toilet
When you ignore going to the toilet as soon as you feel the urge to pass stool, it hardens. This makes it hard to pass later on so you end up straining and potentially developing hemorrhoids.
You shouldn’t force yourself to pass stool. Wait until you naturally feel like defecating and then go to the bathroom.
Some exercises that put too much strain on the lower body make hemorrhoids worse. These include heavy lifting, cycling, horse riding, and squats. Avoid these at all costs if you have hemorrhoids. Read to learn the various exercises you can do to treat and prevent hemorrhoids.
Foods Low in Fiber
Foods low in fiber content make you constipate and more likely to develop hemorrhoids so you should avoid eating such. These foods include fatty foods, dairy products, processed meats, foods made with white refined flour, and tubers without their skins. Read more about high fiber diet.
Sitting for Long Periods of Time
Sitting for extended periods in the office, in front of the television, or on the toilet can lead to the development of hemorrhoids. This is because the tissues of your anus are stretched out and their blood vessels bulge out and distend.
You have a wide selection of natural remedies to choose from so you can go with whichever suits you best. It should take only a few weeks for the hemorrhoids to disappear. Once they do, make sure you observe the prevention measures so that they don’t recur.
If these remedies don’t alleviate the symptoms, visit your doctor for medical intervention. There are procedures that can be performed to get rid of the hemorrhoids.