Hemorrhoids, sometimes referred to as Piles, are swollen and enlarged blood vessels that can sometimes be found inside the rectum or outside of the anus. For the vast majority of people, Hemorrhoids cause very few noticeable symptoms and can often go unnoticed for large periods of time – many people don’t even realize that they have Hemorrhoids! For most people, Hemorrhoids cause little to no discomfort just as long as there is a constant supply of blood to the swollen blood vessels.
However, although some people experience little to no discomfort from Hemorrhoids, there are cases where Hemorrhoids can cause quite a bit of discomfort and can become rather unpleasant. Some of the more unpleasant symptoms of Hemorrhoids include:
- Passing blood either during or after opening your bowels. The blood you pass should be bright red, however if it’s a darker color you should consult a doctor as soon as possible.
- A very itchy back passage that fails to go-away fully.
- An annoying lump that hangs outside of your bottom, it’s very probable that this lump will need to be pushed back inside of your anus after completing a bowel movement.
- Discharge of mucus after emptying your bowels.
- Having a sore, red or swollen anus.
Treating Hemorrhoids at Home
In most cases where people are suffering from the symptoms of Hemorrhoids, they thankfully tend to subside by themselves within a number of days. Nevertheless, making some changes to your lifestyle can help speed along the process at which Hemorrhoids heal, these include:
- Trying to slowly increase the amount of fiber you consume, some good sources of fiber are: fresh fruit & vegetable, whole grain & whole wheat pasta, rice and bread, beans, nuts, seeds, pulses and oats.
- Make sure to drink plenty of liquids, particularly make sure this is primarily water. Avoid drinking caffeine and alcohol as these substances dehydrate the body and increase the likelihood of constipation.
- Don’t delay opening your bowels, even if you are concerned with any potential discomfort. The longer you delay going to the toilet, the more likely you are to dehydrate your stool and encourage constipation and straining.
- Try to avoid taking painkillers that contain substances like codeine, these can cause constipation.
- Exercise regularly if you can! Exercise reduces constipation and improves digestive regularity.
With that being said, although many of these natural solutions to Hemorrhoids are incredible successful, sometimes you need something a little stronger. For those situations you should head to your local pharmacy and ask for some advice. Many of the treatment options doctors will recommend to you are available over-the-counter at your local pharmacy without a prescription – these include a multitude of hemorrhoid creams, ointments and even suppositories to help speed up your recovery.
Do my Hemorrhoids need surgery?
Although most people suffering from Hemorrhoids will find a significant amount of relief from natural and over-the-counter treatment options, there are a number of cases of severe Hemorrhoids that require further treatment to heal. That’s why one of the most frequently asked questions regarding Hemorrhoids is whether or not surgery is required to treat the condition.
Accordingly, if you’ve had a Hemorrhoid for a number of weeks which doesn’t seem to want to subside, regardless of the natural and over-the-counter treatments available – then you should consult a doctor as soon as possible. An inspection from a trained medical professional will provide you with some answers, some relief and a recommended course of action to get rid of the troublesome Hemorrhoid.
For those suffering from long term Hemorrhoids who may also want to avoid surgical procedures, banding is the first course of action. Banding involves using an extremely tight elastic band to cut off the flow of blood to the Hemorrhoid. The elastic band is tied around the base of the Hemorrhoid and, without a strong flow of blood, should literally fall off after roughly a week.
If this fails to work, or if the patient is unwilling or unable to tolerate the Banding method, then surgery is the final option available to doctors. Hemorrhoid surgery is carried out under general anesthetic so you’re completely unconscious, and incisions made to remove or shrink a large Hemorrhoid. In regards to the recovery time following the procedure, it can take roughly 1 – 3 weeks to fully recover from Hemorrhoid surgery.