Were you one of the women who acquired more than just a bundle of joy when you were pregnant? Perhaps you also acquired a bundle of hemorrhoids. No one enjoys discussing hemorrhoids, but they are a reality that many people deal with at different times in life, including pregnancy. Knowing the common causes of hemorrhoids can be beneficial in trying to prevent them from developing.
Hemorrhoids result from increased pressure that dilates veins in the anal area. No matter what the cause may be, hemorrhoid symptoms are often the same – bright red rectal bleeding, pain, itching, and swollen areas in the rectal or anal regions. Hemorrhoids can either be internal, meaning inside the rectal canal, or external, meaning outside the body on the anus. Frequent hemorrhoid causes include constipation, obesity, various intestinal disorders, and pregnancy, all of which increase pressure on the rectal area.
A person who is frequently constipated strains to have bowel movements, which results in increased anal pressure. The key to avoiding hemorrhoids in this case is soft bowel movements. You can relieve and prevent constipation by drinking lots of water, increasing dietary fiber, and taking a daily bulk-forming laxative such as Metamucil. It is also important to listen to your body and go to the bathroom when the urge occurs; do not delay the inevitable process.
Individuals who are significantly overweight or obese develop increased anal pressure because of the extra weight they are carrying. The key to avoiding hemorrhoids in this case is maintaining a normal weight, which is much easier said than done. Some of the main ways to lose weight are exercising, eating a healthy and balanced diet, and avoiding carbohydrates and saturated fats. A good place to start is by decreasing the intake of fast food in your diet and substituting sodas with water.
There are some unpreventable conditions that can cause hemorrhoids. Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease fall under the umbrella of irritable bowel syndrome. Unfortunately, these conditions cannot be prevented because their causes are currently unknown. Some signs of irritable bowel syndrome include rectal bleeding, extreme pain in the abdomen, an inability to tolerate certain foods, and constipation or diarrhea. The key to avoiding hemorrhoids in this case is recognizing signs and symptoms, avoiding flare ups, constant consultation with a health care practitioner, and adhering to a maintenance plan.
Pregnancy is one of the only conditions that can be prevented but is often desired. No one wants to avoid pregnancy just because it could cause hemorrhoid inflammation. Not all pregnant women develop hemorrhoids; however, many pregnant women are prone to them. The key to avoiding hemorrhoids in this case is eating a well-balanced and healthy diet, avoiding excessive weight gain, and maintaining routine prenatal visits. These activities are not only important in promoting the birth of a healthy baby, but are also important in maintaining your healthy body.
Some hemorrhoid causes are preventable and some are not. However, it is much more beneficial for your digestive health to prevent them from forming than to have to treat them after they become inflamed. Surgical intervention may be needed if the hemorrhoids are severe enough to cause extreme bleeding, pain, or swelling. Be proactive. Familiarize yourself with the causes and seek the help of a health care practitioner if you are at high risk of developing these undesired bundles of not so much joy.