Hemorrhoids may have changed the course of history. It is said that Napoleon was so very much distracted by the pain and discomfort of hemorrhoids that this contributed to his defeat at Waterloo. But hemorrhoids or piles are a common ailment this side of the channel too which is affecting about the UK’s population by the age of 50.
Hemorrhoids are areas of congested tissue, full of blood vessels, in the anal canal and lower rectum. Increased pressure over long periods causes these normal areas to become more engorged and swollen. They become painful while under the pressure of straining, they protrude from the anus and their blood supply is cut off by the tight anal sphincter. The hemorrhoids become more congested; they get bigger and they are more likely to come down the next time. If the blood supply is cut down for long enough, the Haemorrhoids strangulates – it thromboses, dies and shrivels but the process can be excruciatingly painful.
In Haemorrhoids, there is a bleeding from the anus during or after straining, usually bright red stool which may be noticed on wiping or which may coat the stool or drip into the pan. Over the time, haemorrhoidal bleeding may be persistent or severe enough to make you anemic. The bleeding is usually painless.
Heredity and age make some people more vulnerable to hemorrhoids, but they can also be caused by and remedied by things like diet and toilet habits. Here are some experts suggest to relieve the pain and discomfort of this common problem:
- Aim for soft, easy bowel movements: – Straining on the toilet provides just the kind of pressure needed to engorge and swell the veins in your rectum. Hard stools worse by scraping the area which is already troubled. The solution is to drink lots of fluids, eat plenty of fiber and observe the following remedies.
- Ease the passage of stools: – Once you have increased your fiber and fluid in your diet, your stool should become softer and pass with less effort. You may help your bowels move even more smoothly by lubricating your anus with a little petroleum jelly. You can use a cotton bud or finger to apply the jelly about 1 cm into the rectum.
- Clean yourself gently: – After moving your bowel it is very important to clean yourself properly. Toilet paper can be scratchy and even some contain chemical irritants. Try to use only unscented toilet paper and dump it under the tap before you wipe.
- Use pre-moistened wipes: – Most of the chemists and supermarkets now sell moist toilet wipes that are soft on your bot and even safe to flush.
- Don’t scratch: – Haemorrhoids can itch and scratch feel them better. But never scratch your hemorrhoids as it will damage the walls of the delicate veins and make matters worse.
- Don’t lift heavy objects: – Lifting heavy objects and strenuous exercise can act much like straining on the toilet. If you are prone to hemorrhoids, you can take help from your close friend to move that piano or dresser.
- Soak in the bath: – You need to sit with your knees raised in 8-10 cm of warm water. Warm water helps to kill the pain and also increase the blood flow to the area which can help to shrink the swollen veins.
- Apply hemorrhoids cream: – They will help to make your problem disappear and even work as a local painkiller to relieve some of the discomforts.
- Try herbal tannins: – Tannins found in plants were once used to tan animal hides to make them into leather. They worked because they are astringents which means that they shrink and tighten up the tissues.
- Watch your weight: – Excess weight has more pressure on their lower extremities, overweight people tend to have more problem with hemorrhoids.
- Control your salt intake: – Excessive salt can make your hemorrhoid worse. Salt retains fluids in the circulatory system that can cause veins in the anus and elsewhere to bulge.
- Lie on your left side if you are pregnant: – Pregnant women are more prone to hemorrhoids uterus sits directly on the blood vessels that drain the haemorrhoidal veins. A good hemorrhoid remedy, if you are pregnant, is to lose on your left side for about 20 minutes every four to six hour. Pressure is decreased on the main vein draining the lower half of the body
- Even constipation is very common in pregnancy as it makes hemorrhoids more likely.
- Give it a little push: – Sometimes hemorrhoids does not refer to a swollen vein but to a downward displacement of the anal canal lining. If you have such protruding hemorrhoid, try to gently push it back into the anal canal. Hemorrhoids if left hanging can develop into painful clots.