Causes and Symptoms of Hemorrhoids
What are hemorrhoids?
Hemorrhoids are common and are no more than enlarged veins. Enlarged veins can occur anywhere in your body, most commonly in the lower legs, called varicose veins. Hemorrhoids or piles describe these enlarged veins when they occur in the rectum. Things like straining when going to the bathroom or sitting down too long are some of the common causes of hemorrhoids, but they can also occur during pregnancy or as a product of liver disease.
What are the symptoms of hemorrhoids?
The most common hemorrhoid symptoms include the following:
- Blood on stools
- Pain near anus
- Protrusion of hemorrhoid outside the anus
- Irritation when passing bowels
- Painful swelling near anus
How common are hemorrhoids?
Hemorrhoids are actually very common and occur in both men and women. Around half of every person experiences hemorrhoids before the age of 50, commonly occurring in pregnant women due to the added pressure on a woman’s abdomen.
How can I avoid hemorrhoids?
The best ways to avoid hemorrhoids are to practice the following diet and lifestyle habits:
- Consume a diet high in fiber, including:
- Fresh fruit
- Leafy vegetables
- Whole grains
- Use stool softeners when needed
- Fiber supplements
- Avoiding excessive wiping
- Practicing good hygiene
- Use a soft, moist towel to gently wipe after bowel movements
- Drinking plenty of water
- Use the restroom as soon as you feel the urge
- Exercise regularly
How are hemorrhoids treated?
If diet and lifestyle changes do not help relieve symptoms of hemorrhoids, treatment options are available at Gotham Medical Associates. These include:
- Infrared coagulation
- Band ligation