Hemorrhoids, Causes and Symptoms
Many people suffer from an uncomfortable and embarrassing condition called hemorrhoids. Many of them suffer in silence because they do not realize that hemorrhoids are actually very common and affects up to half of the population at one time or another. Hemorrhoids are uncomfortable and even painful, but they are rarely serious and can usually be treated with a change in diet, over the counter medication, or in some rare case surgery.
Symptoms of Hemorrhoids
Hemorrhoids are a swelling of the veins in and around the anus that can cause discomfort, pain, and bleeding. Hemorrhoids can occur outside the anus and appear as a small sac or lump that will bleed and be painful. More commonly hemorrhoids occur inside the anus and do not cause much discomfort; rather they just produce blood in on the stool and on toilet paper after wiping. Sometimes hemorrhoids that develop internally can end up protruding from the anus. Sometimes they can easily be pushed back in and will heal on their own but sometimes surgery is required to remove them. Hemorrhoids are caused by frequent straining during bowel movements and hard stools which is usually caused by a lack of fiber and all around balance in the diet. Cutting back on refined and processed foods in favor of fruits and vegetables that contain fiber is the best way to produce softer stools.
Hemorrhoids are not usually serious although their symptoms can be a bit startling and very uncomfortable. Most commonly the symptoms of hemorrhoids include blood on the stool, blood on the toilet paper, itching of the anus, swelling of the anus, pain in the anus, and pain during bowel movements. These symptoms rarely become more than any annoyance, but when they do some more serious symptoms can occur.
Serious Complications of Hemorrhoids
Serious complications of hemorrhoids include gastrointestinal bleeding that can lead to anemia and thrombosis. Gastrointestinal bleeding is one of the more serious complications of hemorrhoids and can present with blood in the stool or blood in vomit. Uncontrolled bleeding like this can lead to anemia which will cause a person to become weak and fatigued. It can also cause thrombosis which is a clot located in the damaged vein which can block the vein and even lead to a heart attack. For people with severe hemorrhoids stomach ulcers are frequently present as well as they also manifest from stomach and bowel damage. Internal hemorrhoids are more likely to cause these types of complications although external hemorrhoids are more likely to require some type of surgery to remove.
In Most Cases Hemorrhoids will Heal on their Own
While the serious complication of hemorrhoids are not something to be taken lightly, the majority of people with hemorrhoids will only experience the less severe albeit annoying symptoms of bleeding, pain, and discomfort. Most cases of hemorrhoids will heal on their own, especially if the sufferer alters their diet to include more fiber to create softer stools. There is also over the counter medication that will help to clear up hemorrhoids. Only the severest cases of hemorrhoids require surgical intervention. Sometimes internal hemorrhoids can cause more serious problems or external hemorrhoids require removal through surgery.