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Hemorrhoids


What are hemorrhoids?


Hemorrhoids are swollen veins in the lower rectum and anus beneath the mucus membrane. Hemorrhoids can develop under the skin around the anus or inside the rectum. There are many causes that contribute to hemorrhoids but the main cause is unknown.


Different Types of Hemorrhoids:

Internal Hemorrhoids.

These types of hemorrhoids lie inside of the rectum and are usually painless yet still may result in:

- bleeding when passing stool which may appear in small red spots on the toilet tissue

- a prolapsed hemorrhoid which can result in pain and irritation


External Hemorrhoids.

These types of hemorrhoids are the most painful and uncomfortable as these are under the skin around the anus. In more severe cases, the veins can produce blood clots and can leave a lump.

Signs and symptoms of external hemorrhoids can be:

  • Irritation and swelling in the anus area

  • bleeding

Causes of Hemorrhoids

  • Most often hemorrhoids are caused due to strained bowel movements or constipation which interferes with the blood flow causing the vessels to enlarge

  • Sitting too long on the toilet

  • Pregnancy is also a typical caused as the enlarged uterus applies excess pressure on the veins of the rectum and anus area

  • Age is also a factor as the tissues in the anus area weaken the older you get

  • Regular heavy lifting

Think you are suffering from hemorrhoids?

Hemorrhoids can be diagnosed by regular physical exams, and your doctor may perform digital rectal exams to check for blood in the stool. In worse cases, a colonoscopy may be performed to further check other complications.


Prevention/treatment:

  • Eat foods high in fibers such as fresh fruit and whole-grain foods, or take fiber supplements

  • Drink fluids often

  • Exercise to stimulate bowel function

  • Don't strain when passing stool

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