Hemorrhoids are swollen veins in the rectum and anus part which can be unpleasant and painful. However, this type of condition can be preventable and can be treated easily so to know how to get rid of hemorrhoids, this article is for you.
How can I get rid of hemorrhoids?
You can get rid of hemorrhoids at home by:
- eating foods that are high in fiber
- taking a stool softener or a fiber supplement such as psyllium (Metamucil) or methylcellulose (Citrucel)
- not straining during bowel movements
- drinking water or other nonalcoholic liquids each day as recommended by your healthcare professional
- not sitting on the toilet for long periods of time
- use topical ointments
- avoiding regular heavy lifting
- taking over-the-counter pain relievers such as acetaminophen, naproxen, ibuprofen or aspirin
- sitting in a tub of warm water, called a sitz bath, several times a day to help relieve pain
- keeping the anal area clean
- applying ice packs or cold compresses on your anus to relieve swelling
By simply looking, your doctor may be able to know if you have external hemorrhoids and to diagnose internal hemorrhoids, tests and procedure include an examination of your anal canal and rectum:
- Digital examination. Your doctor inserts a lubricated, gloved finger into your rectum and feels for anything uncommon.
- Visual inspection. The doctor will use anoscope, proctoscope or sigmoidoscope to inspect the lower part of your colon and rectum.
The doctor will need to examine your entire colon using colonoscopy if:
- You have risk factors for colorectal cancer
- Your signs and symptoms suggest you might have another digestive system disease
- You’re middle-aged and haven’t had a recent colonoscopy
How do doctors treat hemorrhoids?
Doctors treat hemorrhoids with procedures such as:
Minimally invasive procedures
- Rubber band ligation. Your doctor will put a tiny rubber band around the base of internal hemorrhoid to cut off the blood supply causing hemorrhoid to weaken and falls off mostly within a week.
- Injection (sclerotherapy). This procedure when compared to rubber band ligation causes a little pain, where the doctor injects a chemical solution into an internal hemorrhoid tissue to shrivel it.
- Coagulation (infrared, laser or bipolar). The doctor uses laser or infrared light or heat in this procedure to harden and shrink the internal hemorrhoids.
Your doctor may recommend the following surgical procedures if other procedures haven't been fruitful in removing your hemorrhoids:
- Hemorrhoid removal. Also known as hemorrhoidectomy, the most effective way of treating severe hemorrhoids, where the surgeon takes away excessive tissue that causes bleeding.
- Hemorrhoid stapling. Also called as stapled hemorrhoidectomy or stapled hemorrhoidopexy, this procedure is less painful than hemorrhoidectomy and this blocks blood flow to hemorrhoidal tissue. Preparing for your appointment
The doctor may recommend over-the-counter ointments, creams, suppositories or pads if your hemorrhoids produce only mild discomfort but take note that unless directed by your doctor, never to use an over-the-counter steroid cream for more than a week because it causes the skin to thin.
What to expect from your doctor
When heading to a doctor, the usual thing the doctor does is ask questions so if you have any errands to finish or any meetings to catch up, it is better to have quick and accurate answers on the questions he or she may ask such as:
- When did your symptoms first occur
- How uncomfortable are your symptoms
- How much fiber does your diet contain
- Has anyone in your family ever had hemorrhoids or cancer of the colon, rectum or anus
- What, if anything, seems to improve your symptoms
- What, if anything, appears to worsen your symptoms
- What are your typical bowel habits
- Have you had a change in your bowel habits
- During bowel movements, have you noticed blood on your toilet paper, dripping into the toilet or mixed into your stools
When to seek care right away?
If you have severe anal pain and experiences bleeding from your rectum or having diarrhea or fever, you should seek medical care right away to receive treatments for these kinds of illness.