Health One Family Medicine

Hemorrhoids And How To Treat Them

Hemorrhoids occur typically as a result of increased pressure from straining in bowel movements, pregnancy or due to overweight. This typically becomes an ongoing problem when an individual reaches midlife. By the time people reach the age of 50, majority of them have experienced at least one hemorrhoid symptom including rectal bleeding, itching, pain and even prolapsed hemorrhoid. This is not dangerous in majority of the cases but this problem can become painful and recurrent.  

Understanding Hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids are also referred to as piles and are the swollen veins in the rectum or anus. These can occur outside or inside of the rectum and anus called external and internal hemorrhoids. The most common symptoms are rectal bleeding, itching and pain. Hemorrhoids usually go away on their own, in a few weeks, but they can result in mild to extreme discomfort.  

Symptoms of Hemorrhoids

Some symptoms for hemorrhoids are as follows:

  • Painless bleeding
  • Feeling that bowel isn’t empty
  • Severe pain
  • Burning sensation
  • Discharge of mucus
  • Itching

Treating Hemorrhoids at Home

There are various home remedies to relieve mild inflammation, swelling and pain of hemorrhoids. Usually, these are the only remedies needed to treat hemorrhoids. The home remedies are as follows:  

  • Eating foods rich in high fiber like whole grains, vegetables and fruits can soften your stool and enhances its bulk. This helps in avoiding straining which usually worsens the symptoms.
  • Soaking in warm baths regularly for 10 to 15 minutes a few times a day can provide relieve from hemorrhoids.
  • Thoroughly cleaning the anal area by cleansing the skin around it with warm water gently can also cause relief. It is essential to pat dry gently and avoid perfumed or alcohol based wipes.
  • Applying cold compresses and ice packs can assist in reducing the swelling.
  • It is ideal to use a wet toilet paper instead of a dried one to wipe up the area after bowel movement.

These home remedies can help you in getting rid of hemorrhoids.

Medications for Hemorrhoids

You can also utilize topical over-the-counter treatments like hemorrhoid cream, suppositories, ointments, or pads that contain numbing agent, lidocaine, hydrocortisone and witch hazel can help in treating hemorrhoids in case of mild discomfort. This can provide relief from itching and pain. It is best to avoid these creams after a week of application unless your doctor advices otherwise. Pain relievers like ibuprofen (Motrin IB, Advil), aspirins or acetaminophen can also provide relief from pain and discomfort.  

It is usually easy to treat hemorrhoids on your own in case of mild discomfort. However, complications might occur in rare cases. Anemia can occur due to chronic blood loss which is the deficiency of red blood cells. Internal hemorrhoids can get their blood supply restricted or blocked which can lead to strangulated hemorrhoids that can result in severe pain. If you don’t get rid of hemorrhoids in a week or are experiencing extreme bleeding or pain, it is crucial to consult your doctor immediately. For more remedies, prevention tips, you can contact