When you sit, stand, or walk for prolonged periods, your anus bluffs its way out of the same-old poo puddle. Which is great except when that poo puddle is your asshole. It’s called hemorrhoids and it happens when you have little swollen blood vessels (called veins) in your bottom. Basically, your rectum and anus get their own zip code. And it’s not fun to live in. Hemorrhoids are not a disease but a symptom of underlying conditions. It is important to understand what causes hemorrhoids because it can be difficult to treat these issues on your own if you aren’t aware of the triggers and risk factors involved. In this article we cover everything you need to know about why you may develop hemorrhoids, as well as the most common treatments available to help ease them.
What are the symptoms of hemorrhoids?
The first time you notice blood in your stool is when you have hemorrhoids. If you have other symptoms that accompany bleeding, such as pain, an urgent need to strain, or a feeling of fullness in your anus, these may be a symptom of anal fissure, another condition that can cause hemorrhoids. When you have hemorrhoids, your stool is going to be thicker and more bloody than usual. You may notice that you have more frequency than usual, that your stool is more urgent, or that you are straining when trying to go to the toilet. You may also notice blood in your stool or on the toilet paper. If you have hemorrhoids, you may also notice some of the following symptoms:
– A feeling of fullness in your anus, which may make you strain to go to the toilet.
– Pain when you strain, especially when you first strain.
– An urgent need to strain followed by relief when you strain.
– A burning sensation when you strain.
– A change in the color of your stool, which may look more red or darker than usual.
Causes of Hemorrhoids
– Obesity – When the walls of your colon expand beyond their capacity, they can tear and bleed.
– Sedentary Lifestyle – You are at higher risk of developing hemorrhoids if you are a couch potato.
– Pregnancy – During pregnancy, your uterus enlarges and pushes your colon out of position. This can strain your hemorrhoids.
– Lack of Hydration – If you aren’t properly hydrated, your stool will be softer and more prone to bleeding.
Prevention of Hemorrhoids
– Stool Softeners – These work by temporarily reducing the viscosity of your stool, thereby reducing the pressure on your rectum and reducing the risk of hemorrhoids.
– Diet Changes – Make sure you are eating high-fiber foods, drinking plenty of water, and avoiding fatty foods, which can make your stool softer.
– Avoid Sitting – Sitting for long periods can cause the walls of your colon to thicken and can increase the risk of hemorrhoids.
– Exercise – It’s important to exercise regularly because it can increase your metabolism and help you lose weight, which can reduce the risk of developing hemorrhoids.
Hemorrhoids are caused by the pressure in your rectum being greater than the pressure in your anal canal. They can happen to anyone and even though they are common, they don’t generally cause a problem. It’s important to understand the causes so you can prevent them, treat them, and live a normal life. Preventative measures, such as diet and exercise, can help you live a healthy, normal life with hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids can be treated with medications, such as over-the-counter suppositories or topical creams. While hemorrhoids are common, they are also manageable when they are caught early. Make sure you know what causes them so you can prevent them and live a regular, healthy life.