Let me say first that this is not cocktail party conversation, but since so many people suffer from hemorrhoids it’s good to get as much information as possible, so they can be treated and hopefully disappear.
Hemorrhoids, also known as piles, are swollen veins in the lower half of the anus and rectum. When the veins swell, they become stretched and irritated. You may experience itching, painless bleeding, pain or soreness, or lumps or swelling in the anal region.
If you’re overweight, sit too much, strain on the toilet, or lift heavy objects, you may be more likely to suffer from hemorrhoids. Genetics also plays a role, so if a family member is affected, your chances of developing hemorrhoids increases.
You may feel embarrassed to bring this to your doctor’s attention, and if that is the case, you can try natural remedies first. Here are five natural remedies to deal with hemorrhoids:
Change Toilet Paper
Wiping yourself with dry toilet paper can irritate sensitive areas, so stock up on moist wipes. Look for wipes that have been treated with witch hazel. For maximum relief, chill before using. Don’t buy wipes with alcohol or fragrances, as they can irritate the skin. Make sure you buy wipes that are flushable to avoid plumbing problems.
A cold ice pack can reduce swelling and inflammation. Put ice cubes in a cold compress bag, and apply to the affected area. Keep the ice on the outside of your rectum, even if you think inserting ice cubes would result in faster healing. It won’t, and you could wind up with a nasty case of frostbite.
You can buy a sitz bath at your local pharmacy. It is convenient to use and fits right over your toilet. Fill with warm water and sit for 15 minutes, several times a day. This is especially important after a bowel movement.
I use flax seed in my oatmeal and it adds a pleasant nutty taste. It is a good source of fiber, and you can also cook with it. Add flaxseed to breads, cookies, cakes, or muffins. Purchase flaxseed from a health food store and make sure it is either ground, or you have a way to grind it. What a delicious way to keep your bowels active!
Develop Good Bathroom Habits
Don’t linger on the toilet to read books or magazines. If you find that you’re not able to have a bowel movement, get up and try again later. Get in the habit of having your bowel movements at the same time each day.
Try these tips and see which ones work best for you. Don’t hesitate to consult your doctor if you’re still having problems. There is no need to feel embarrassed. They are used to treating all parts of the body.