Hemorrhoids, What Are They and Where Are They Coming From?

HemWell Patient Researching hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids are nuisances and can be painful, but they do not last forever. This article will cover hemorrhoid symptoms, causes, treatments, prevention, and when to see a doctor about hemorrhoids.

What are hemorrhoids?

Hemorrhoids are swollen veins that usually occur in the anal canal and lower rectum. Piles can develop inside or outside of the anus and vary in degree of severity: Internal hemorrhoids may cause few or no symptoms at all. External hemorrhoids come with more obvious effects like pain, itching, burning, irritation, and sometimes even bleeding. Symptoms depend on their grade (degree) of severity which is determined by size or protrusion from the body.

What causes hemorrhoids?

Piles result from increased pressure on veins, and veins naturally swell to counter this pressure. The hemorrhoidal tissue is a network of blood vessels and tissues which can stretch to accommodate the extra fluid volume. These symptoms may include anal/rectal itching, burning, pain, painful bowel movements, mucus or pus from the anus, piles protruding outside of the anus when straining at stool or with a bowel movement.

Some causes may be the side effect of pregnancy, obesity, chronic constipation or diarrhea, heavy lifting/straining during either bowel movements or other instances requiring extreme abdominal strength (such as giving birth), sitz baths, family history, aging symptoms for men or women, and genetic susceptibility.

What are hemorrhoid treatments?

Treatments are designed to deal with symptoms on a surface level by providing relief from burning, itching and/or pain. The goal of treatments is to reduce the inflammation caused by the swelling of blood vessels to relieve uncomfortable symptoms.

There are many types of treatment available, ranging from home remedies like witch hazel pads and supplements to topical creams. There are more invasive procedures such as rubber band ligation (a type of rubber band therapy that cuts off circulation) or sclerotherapy (treatment that destroys veins). Treatments are a hemorrhoid-specific remedy and should not be considered as a cure.

How do you prevent hemorrhoids?

Prevention of hemorrhoids is all about staying healthy and maintaining symptoms relief. Following prevention tips like eating a fiber-rich diet (whole grains, fresh vegetables, and fruit), having lots of water (64 oz or more per day), and regular exercise can help keep your digestive system running smoothly. 

When should I see a doctor about hemorrhoids?

If the pain associated with hemorrhoids is unbearable, it is a sign you should see a doctor. If there’s blood involved or if you suspect that you may have other health concerns such as anal cancer or inflammatory bowel disease, then you should consult a doctor immediately.

Sitz baths are designed to relieve symptoms through relief methods while also providing a cure in the form of prevention and a way to diminish symptoms long-term. Sitz bath treatments require you to add a modest amount of water into a standard tub and sit in it for 10-15 minutes. A sitz bath can be especially effective after bowel movements because your anus will already be open from the movement, allowing more of the lukewarm water into your body cavity.

Ask your doctor about HemWell, an FDA-approved, pain-free treatment that’s permanent. If your provider doesn’t offer HemWell, we can assist you in finding one that does. Please visit our website to learn more about this life-changing treatment. Learn more about hemorrhoids.