Hemorrhoids are inflamed veins in the anus that become swollen due to strained bowel movements, increased pressure caused by being overweight or pregnant, and a variety of other things. They’re not particularly pleasant, but hemorrhoids are actually quite common, with three in four adults suffering from them at least once in their lifetime.
For the most part, once diagnosed, hemorrhoids can be managed with home treatments and lifestyle changes. Here are 6 such remedies for hemorrhoids that you can try from home.
1. Sitz Bath
Sitz baths use a specialized toilet bowl liner that can be filled with warm water and sitz bath mixture. To use, simply sit on it as you would normally sit to use the toilet. It’s recommended that sitz baths be done 1 to 2 times per day, or after every bowel movement so it can soak the area and relieve the pain.
2. Psyllium husk
Psyllium husk is one kind of supplement you can take to soften your stool. This won’t help existing hemorrhoids, but it will prevent it from growing any larger or from becoming more painful while passing hard stools. Be wary of taking too many supplements as they can upset the stomach and induce gas.
3. Epsom Salts & Glycerin
This home remedy works much like the Sitz Bath, but instead can be done in the bathtub, or at a much more local level by using a gauze pad. To use this remedy, mix 2 tablespoons of Epsom Salts with 2 tablespoons of Glycerin, then apply the mixture to a gauze pad and place the pad over the hemorrhoid for about 15-20 minutes. You may repeat this process every 4 to 6 hours until the pain subsides.
4. Loose Cotton Clothing
Swapping out tight, polyester clothing (especially underwear) with loose-fitting cotton clothes can really help in keeping the area cool, dry, and clean. It will also help you stay more comfortable and avoid any further, unnecessary pressure on the area.
5. Cold Compress
If you’re in lots of pain, it’s likely that your hemorrhoid is pretty swollen. By applying a cold compress to the area you can help reduce the swelling and lessen the pain. If you do so, only apply for 15 minutes at a time and always wrap the compress in a cloth or paper towel.
6. Wet Wipes
Whatever you do, you’ll really want to avoid using regular toilet paper. If you need to wipe the area, it’s better to go with medicated wipes made for hemorrhoids, or even with simple wet wipes. Make sure the wipes you use do not have alcohol, fragrance, or any other irritant.
Before you begin any home remedy, be sure to get a clear diagnosis that you’re suffering from hemorrhoids. The symptoms of hemorrhoids may also be symptoms of other more serious conditions. If you are experiencing blood in your stool, or when you wipe, it is highly recommended to see a specialist. Also, be sure to remember that these remedies may not cure your hemorrhoids. To completely remove hemorrhoids, you may need a hemorrhoid banding surgery or a hemorrhoidectomy. If you would like to consult a colorectal specialist about the treatment of your hemorrhoids, contact us to book an appointment today!