Healthy Living

Dealing with Piles; painful or otherwise

Dealing with Piles; painful or otherwise

 

Avoiding constipation is often the key to treating piles, also called hemorrhoids. And simple diet and lifestyle changes may help reduce  symptoms. They become a problem when hemorrhoids start to become itchy, cause pain, or bleed. Fortunately there are a number of simple strategies to prevent hemorrhoids from interfering with your daily life.

  1. Aim to get 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day. Great food sources of fiber include:
  • Legumes, such as split peas, lentils, black beans, lima beans, and baked beans
  • Whole grains, such as barley, bran flakes, oatmeal, and brown rice
  • Vegetables, such as artichoke, green peas, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts
  • Fruits, such as raspberries, pears, apples, and bananas

 

  1. Drinking enough water helps prevent constipationand therefore decreases straining and that prevents piles.
  2. Staying active reduces your time spent sitting and putting pressure on the veins in rectum. If you have a history of hemorrhoids, you might avoid lifting heavy weights or other strenuous activities and opt for more moderate exercise routines such as yoga, swimming, or walking 
  3. The safest laxatives are those that work with your body rather than those that stimulate or simulate normal physiological activities. Isbgol powder is the safest.
  4. When you avoid the urge to visit toilet till end until you decide you have the time to move your bowels, success will be far more elusive and straining far more likely.
  5. Avoid straining at defecation since it is one of the most common causes of painful or bleeding hemorrhoids. Let the stools pass naturally.
  6. Here are several steps you can take at home to ease the discomfort caused by hemorrhoids:
  • Take a sitz bath two to three times daily for 15 to 20 minutes. Sit in warm water, covering just your hips and buttocks. This can help reduce itching and irritation. You can take a sitz bath in a few inches of water in a regular tub, but small tubs that fit over toilet seats are also available for this purpose at pharmacies. Following a sitz bath, gently pat the area dry to avoid further irritation. (2)
  • Use ice packs on the area to relieve swelling and pain.
  • Don't push too hard or strain while passing stools.
  • Clean your anus after each bowel movement by gently patting (rather than wiping) with moistened pads, such as baby wipes. Using hard, dry toilet paper, which may contain fragrance, can cause further irritation.
  • Keep the area clean by bathing or showering daily with warm water. After bathing, gently pat the area dry. You can even use a hair dryer to dry the area.
  • Sit on cushions rather than hard surfaces to help lessen the swelling of hemorrhoids and keep new ones from forming.
  • Anytime you have bleeding, feel a lump in the anus, or have rectal pain, you should see a doctor.
  • External hemorrhoids arise from the anal canal, while internal hemorrhoids arise from the rectum. Untreated internal hemorrhoids can cause bleeding. External hemorrhoids can cause thrombosis [blood clotting], which gives way to severe pain.
  1. Your doctor may recommend surgery/ hemorrhoidectomy if:
  • You have large external hemorrhoids
  • You have both internal and external hemorrhoids
  • An internal hemorrhoid has prolapsed (popped out through the anus)

In surgery, the doctor makes a small incision to remove the hemorrhoid and surrounding tissue before closing the wound with stitches.

Hemorrhoidectomy is associated with postoperative pain, but the procedure is successful for 95 percent of cases. More recently, another option has become available, called a stapled hemorrhoidopexy. A circular stapling device pulls the hemorrhoidal tissue upward and to its normal position, stapling it in place. The staples eventually fall out over time. This may cause less pain.

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