Do you have itching or pain in your anus? Is there sometimes bright red blood in your stool? There is a good chance that you suffer from hemorrhoids. You can feel this as a bump near your anus and in some cases it can also bulge. Obviously it is very annoying to suffer from this, so what can you do about it?
Hemorrhoids are prolapsed erectile tissues that are located on the inside of the sphincter muscle. Sagging can be caused by too much pressure. For example, due to hard pressing due to constipation, sitting on the toilet for too long, pressure due to diarrhea. In pregnant women and the elderly, the tissue relaxes, but fortunately for the pregnant woman this is of a “short” duration.
There are different stages of complaints:
- bright red blood in the stool and pain
- bulging where the hemorrhoids come out but retract again
- bulging where the hemorrhoid does not go back itself but can be pushed back
- bulging where the hemorrhoid can no longer be pushed back and is very painful. Because the sphincter muscle no longer works properly, stool can leak and there is often a skid mark in the underwear
If you suffer from hard stools, you can take psyllium husks or bran. And to relieve the complaints you can buy Vaseline cream, possibly with zinc oxide or zinc sulphate. (not for bleeding hemorrhoids!) There is also lidocaine/Vaseline cream to relieve the complaints, the lidocaine has an analgesic effect. Suppositories with various active ingredients are also available to relieve the symptoms, but these are less effective than creams.
To ensure that the complaints go away and do not return, the following advice is important:
- don’t press too hard
- eat fiber rich food (possibly take bran)
- move a lot
- drink enough
- if urgent, go straight to the toilet
- if nothing comes, don’t sit on the toilet for too long
In case of pain, itching or irritation:
- do not scratch
- wear cotton underwear
- take a warm bath
- always push back a bulging hemorrhoid
- rinse with warm water and then pat dry
- use a wet washcloth or uncolored toilet paper for cleaning
- do not use colored or moist toilet paper
When it is better to go to your doctor:
If your complaints do not improve after 2 weeks, you should contact your doctor. Even if a hemorrhoid bulges out. If you regularly have skid marks in your underwear, you should also contact your doctor. If the pain remains severe despite relieving medication, if there is blood in the stool instead of on it, if there is a loss of more than a few drops of blood, if there is a feeling of pressure or urgency without any relief, or if there is a sudden or gradual change in your bowel habits, you should definitely contact your doctor!
When the hemorrhoid is in the fourth stage, it will have to be removed in the hospital. It is therefore advisable to always treat your hemorrhoid and especially try to prevent it.
At your pharmacy they can give you good advice and possibly refer you to your doctor.