Natural Remedies For Hemorrhoids
- By Matthew Solan, Executive Editor, Harvard Men’s Health Watch
Hemorrhoids are painful, unpleasant, and, um, well, difficult to talk about. But they actually are quite common: about half of people over age 50 have had them. However, theyre easy to treat and manage.
Hemorrhoids can be troublesome and embarrassing, but they often shrink on their own with simple self-help care and over-the-counter remedies, says Dr. Howard LeWine, assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.
Procedures For Hemorrhoids Treatment
Some hemorrhoids can’t be managed with conservative treatments alone, either because symptoms persist or because an internal hemorrhoid has prolapsed. Fortunately, a number of minimally invasive hemorrhoid treatments are available that are less painful than traditional hemorrhoid removal and allow a quicker recovery. These procedures are generally performed in a surgeon’s office or as outpatient surgery in a hospital.
Band it. The most commonly used hemorrhoid treatment in the United States is rubber band ligation, in which a small elastic band is placed around the base of a hemorrhoid . The band causes the hemorrhoid to shrink and the surrounding tissue to scar as it heals, holding the hemorrhoid in place. It takes two to four procedures, done six to eight weeks apart, to completely eliminate the hemorrhoid. Complications, which are rare, include mild pain or tightness , bleeding, and infection. Other office procedures include laser or infrared coagulation, sclerotherapy, and cryosurgery. They all work on the same principle as rubber band ligation but are not quite as effective in preventing recurrence. Side effects and recurrence vary with the procedure, so consult your physician about what’s best for your situation.
How Do You Treat External Hemorrhoids Diagnosis
External hemorrhoids appear as bumps and/or dark areas surrounding the anus. If the lump is tender, it suggests that the hemorrhoid is thrombosed. Any lump needs to be carefully followed, however, and should not be assumed to be a hemorrhoid since there are rare cancers of the anal area that may masquerade as hemorrhoids.
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When Should I Call My Doctor About Hemorrhoids
If symptoms of hemorrhoids continue for more than a week despite using home remedies, or if you dont get relief or if you have severe pain or bleeding, call your doctor. Once hemorrhoids reach a certain size, prescription medicine, physician office procedures or surgical treatment may be necessary.
While it may be an embarrassing topic for patients to bring up, I tell them, theres no shame in admitting to discomfort, Dr. Broderick said.
Medication or an outpatient procedure may be recommended, including banding/ ligation or an infrared procedure to treat internal hemorrhoids. In severe cases, surgery will be recommended for external hemorrhoids.
For most patients, hemorrhoids are easy to manage and rarely require surgery, said Frederick R. Lane, MD, with Indiana Colon & Rectal Specialists, a Franciscan Physician Network practice. Its important to remember, however, that bleeding should never be ignored and needs to be evaluated by a specialist.
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- Take an aloe vera leaf and remove the thorn of the leaf.
- Cut the leaf into strips, put these slices in a bowl and keep in the refrigerator for a while.
- Apply a cold aloe vera strip to the affected area to get relief from the burning, itching sensation, and pain.
- Repeat this process regularly to help soothe your hemorrhoids.
- Extract the gel from an aloe vera leaf.
- Rub this gel into the anus and massage slowly into the affected area for a few minutes.
- This process can help you by relieving pain and soothing burning sensations.
- Apply this process to eliminate external hemorrhoids.
3. Witch Hazel
Witch hazel has healing and mildly astringent properties which can help to ease the discomforts related to hemorrhoids. This astringent property helps to shrink inflamed blood vessels and relieve pain, itching, and swelling. According to a 2011 study published in the Journal of Inflammation, it also contains anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Moreover, it helps to reduce bruising.
4. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil has antiviral, antibacterial, and antimicrobial properties, which can help to treat hemorrhoid symptoms. Moreover, it helps to reduce the infection and pain as well.
10. Almond Oil
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What Are The Symptoms Of Hemorrhoids
You may have no noticeable symptoms from internal hemorrhoids. Sometimes, a bowel movement may irritate an internal hemorrhoid and cause bleeding.
If the internal hemorrhoid is pushed outside of your anal opening, you may have bleeding during bowel movements and symptoms in the anal area that include:
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When Is A Sitz Bath Used
A sitz bath doesnt require a doctors prescription. Some people use sitz baths regularly as a way to cleanse the perineum. In addition to its use in cleansing, the sitz baths warm water increases blood flow to the perineal area. This can promote faster healing. A sitz bath also relieves:
Both children and adults can use sitz baths. Parents should always supervise their children during a sitz bath.
Doctors sometimes prescribe medications or other additives to put in a sitz bath. An example is povidone-iodine, which has antibacterial properties. Adding table salt, vinegar, or baking soda to the water can also create a soothing solution. But you may take a sitz bath using only warm water.
Gradually Increase Your Fiber Intake
Most of us dont get in enough fiber everyday, but adding more high-fiber foods like beans, broccoli, whole grains, and fresh fruit to your diet can help you avoid constipation and stay regular. This in turn reduces the chances that youll find yourself straining and further irritating your hemorrhoids, says Dr. Thomas. Aim for 20 to 30 grams of fiber a day, and consider taking a fiber supplement that contains psyllium or methylcellulose to help you hit your daily goal. If youre typically low on fiber-rich foods, though, take your timesuddenly upping your intake may make you gassy.
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Hemorrhoidectomy Versus Fixative Procedures For Internal Hemorrhoids
- Fixative procedures are usually tried before surgery if hemorrhoids are small and stick out of the anus during a bowel movement but return to their normal position afterward .
- Hemorrhoidectomy may provide better long-term results than fixative procedures. But surgery requires a longer recovery time, is usually more painful, and has a greater risk of complications.
- Fixative procedures are the preferred treatment for people older than age 70 and for people in poor health.
You can help prevent the irritating and painful symptoms of hemorrhoids.
Best Ointment: Doctor Butler’s Hemorrhoid & Fissure Ointment
Packed with organic herbs, minerals, and amino acids, this popular ointment reduces pain, itching, and burning protects and soothes irritations reduces swelling and stops bleeding from hemorrhoids and small anal tears. With over 2,000 five-star reviews, you know itll provide some relief.
This really is a miracle ointment, . Ive been suffering from hemorrhoids for years and I knew when I became pregnant I was in for some trouble. Im now 5 weeks postpartum and a few days ago I developed a thrombosed hemorrhoid. It was excruciating I am on day two with five applications already and I have much improvement.
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Soak It Off In A Sitz Bath
A sitz bath comes from the German word sitzen, meaning sit, and it refers to a 10 to 15 minute soak in warm water that comes just up to your bottom and hips. Sitz baths can relieve irritation and itching as well as spasm of your anal sphincter muscles, says Dr. Thomas. Take a shallow soak in your bathtub or buy a small plastic tub from your pharmacy to give yourself a portable sitz bath two to three times a day.
Best For Hemorrhoid Shrinking: Dr Cole’s Herbal Balm Hemorrhoid Treatment
Chock-full of expert-recommended essential oils and ingredients like witch hazel, beeswax, olive oil, yarrow, and vitamin E, this organic balm numbs and shrinks hemorrhoids gently and effectively. When you open the tin, be sure to stir the contents with a fork, as the beeswax tends to settle on top and needs to be blended into the mixture. Apply a dime-sized amount to the irritated area three to four times a day.
This product has literally saved my life, one reviewer writes. I cant use over the counter or prescription treatments. This is the only product that I dont have a severe allergic reaction to. It soothes and comforts and helps shrink the hemorrhoids.
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From Home Remedies To Advanced Surgical Techniques
Hemorrhoids can be the source of unrelenting aggravation for some and the cause of debilitating pain in others. The aim of treatment is threefold: to alleviate the immediate symptoms to prevent further exacerbation of the injury, and to resolve the underlying cause. This is often accomplished with high-fiber diets, stool softeners, and over-the-counter topical medications. In severe cases, however, surgical and non-surgical procedures may be used to remove the hemorrhoid.
What Causes External Hemorrhoids
The most common cause of external hemorrhoids is repeated straining while having a bowel movement. Hemorrhoids develop when the veins of the rectum or anus become dilated or enlarged and can be either internal or external. External hemorrhoids are usually found beneath the skin that surrounds the anus.
There is a range of symptoms that can affect a person with hemorrhoids. Symptoms tend to vary depending on the severity of your hemorrhoids. Some of the symptoms that you may have include the following:
You may notice bleeding when using the bathroom. This includes seeing blood on toilet paper or in the toilet. Lumps around the anus may feel as if they are swollen.
These symptoms may also occur because of other conditions. But if you experience these symptoms, you should schedule an exam with your doctor.
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How To Heal Hemorrhoids: Over
Products used to treat hemorrhoids are available as
- foams, and
When used around the anus, ointments, creams, and gels should be applied as a thin covering. When applied to the anal canal, these products should be inserted with a finger or a “pile pipe.” Pile pipes are most efficient when they have holes on the sides as well as at the end. Pile pipes should be lubricated with ointment prior to insertion. Suppositories or foams do not have advantages over ointments, creams, and gels.
Hemorrhoid Medication: When Why And Which Ones To Use
A number of OTC creams, ointments, and pads that contain hydrocortisone or witch hazel are available to help relieve pain, swelling, and itching caused by hemorrhoids. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, doctors recommend using over-the-counter products for a week. If symptoms persist beyond a week, follow up with your doctor.
Creams and suppositories containing hydrocortisone can cause the skin to weaken and thin, so they should not be used for more than a week. If any of these creams cause a rash or dry skin around the area, contact your healthcare provider.
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Precautions On How To Get Rid Of Hemorrhoids
A common concern is that hemorrhoids increase the risk of colorectal cancer, but thats not true. However, the two conditions do cause similar symptoms. This is why its important to mention your hemorrhoids to your health care provider. Even when a hemorrhoid is healed completely, a colonoscopy may be done to rule out other causes of rectal bleeding. According to the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons , every person age 50 and older should undergo a colonoscopy to screen for colorectal cancer.
Home Remedies To Reduce Painful Piles
Witch hazel, the wonder plant is a time-tested natural remedy for treating several skin ailments and health issues. The potent anti-inflammatory effect is beneficial in reducing pain and itching associated haemorrhoids as well as lessen swelling. Witch hazel liquid can be directly applied to the haemorrhoids to get respite. Anti-itch wipes and soaps containing witch hazel are also available.
Aloe vera gel has been used since ages for treating haemorrhoids owing to its indispensable medicinal and therapeutic properties. The strong anti-inflammatory properties of aloe vera gel may reduce swelling and irritation. For healing, external haemorrhoids apply the gel topically and allow to stay for 10-15 minutes. While for internal piles you can drink aloe vera juice on an empty stomach in the morning which improves digestion and eases constipation. Also Read: Aloe Vera: Medicinal Uses, Benefits For Skin And Hair, Supplements And Recipes
Warm Bath With Epsom Salt
A warm bath can work well in soothing the inflamed haemorrhoids. You can take a sitz bath, which is a small plastic tub that fits over a toilet seat or take a full-body bath in a tub. Studies show that taking a warm bath for 15-20 minutes after a bowel movement is most effective to reduce pain. Adding Epsom salt to the bathwater will soothe and relax anal muscles and also provide relief from itchiness.
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Hemorrhoid Home Remedies: Warm Sitz Bath
A sitz bath refers to sitting in a few inches of warm water three times a day for 15 to 20 minutes. A sitz bath may help decrease the inflammation of hemorrhoids. Drying off the anal area completely after each sitz bath is important for minimizing moisture that irritates the skin surrounding your rectal area.
When Should You Call Your Doctor
Common symptoms of hemorrhoids may be a sign of other serious health problems. Colon or rectal cancer and other conditions have many of the same symptoms as hemorrhoids. Call your doctor if you have symptoms like these:
- Stools are black or tarry.
- A lump or bulge that is not tender and does not go away develops at the anal opening.
If you have hemorrhoids, call your doctor if:
- Moderate rectal pain lasts longer than 1 week after home treatment.
- Pain or swelling is severe.
- Tissue from inside the body bulges from the anus and does not return to normal after 3 to 7 days of home treatment.
- A lump inside the anus becomes bigger or more painful.
If rectal bleeding becomes heavy or changes colour , or if stools change size, shape, or colour , be sure to see your doctor.
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How To Get Rid Of Hemorrhoids: Diagnosis And Treatments
Most individuals who have hemorrhoids discover them by either
- feeling the lump of an external hemorrhoid when they wipe themselves after a bowel movement,
- noting drops of blood in the toilet bowl or on the toilet paper, or
- feeling a prolapsing hemorrhoid after bowel movements.
With a history of symptoms, a physician can begin diagnosis on the basis of a careful examination of the anus and anal area. Although the physician should try his or her best to identify the hemorrhoids, it is perhaps more important to exclude other causes of hemorrhoid-like symptoms that require different treatment such as
- anal fissures,
This is true whether or not hemorrhoids are found during anoscopy.
How To Get Rid Of External Hemorrhoids Without Surgery
After identifying the hemorrhoids, you can rid them through at-home remedies, which eliminate them naturally.
You can either have a warm bath or relax in a bathtub with a few spoons of Epsom salt. Besides, you can apply a warm compress for around 10 to 15minutes. To shrink the size, you can use a cotton pad soaked in an astringent.
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Best For Instant Relief: Thena Natural Wellness Organic Sitz Bath Soak
Another Epsom salt-enriched pick, this organic bath soak has the finest grain Epsom and Dead Sea salts that dissolve quickly to offer immediate relief, shrinking hemorrhoids, softening damaged skin, and neutralizing odor. The bath soak also uses magnesium oil to lubricate the perineum to repair damaged tissue to prevent infection. On average, Amazon shoppers give this product a respectable 4.6 stars.
I would recommend this for postpartum care or hemorrhoid care, one reviewer says. It was much better , and all that is needed It helped heal my episiotomy complications within a week.
Home Remedies For Internal Hemorrhoids
Most internal hemorrhoids do not have symptoms. One way to tell if you have internal hemorrhoids is the presence of blood during or after a bowel movement.
To care for internal hemorrhoids at home, start by improving your diet. When you increase your fiber intake and your fluid consumption, you reduce the risk of constipation that often leads to hemorrhoids.
Eating plenty of high-fiber foods, or taking a fiber supplement, can help keep the stool soft and reduce the effects of difficult bowel movements.
Water intake is important because this helps the fiber move through the bowels. For temporary relief, stool softeners may be used.
Internal hemorrhoids are not associated with pain because they are in an area that doesnt have the nerve-endings that allow us to feel pain.
Because they do not have the symptoms of discomfort and pain, like external hemorrhoids, the best treatment is prevention and reducing the effects of bowel movements on the rectum.
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