Hemorrhoids are swollen veins inside or outside the anus. Internal hemorrhoids are dilated veins inside the rectum that do not hurt but may bleed or occasionally bulge through the anus. External hemorrhoids are on the outside of the anus and can itch and cause pain if they fill up with blood (thrombosed hemorrhoid). Some causes of hemorrhoids include straining while trying to have a bowl movement, constipation, excessive body weight, pregnancy, and lifting heavy weights.

Prevention

  • Avoid constipation and keep your stools soft.
  • Try not to strain while having a bowel movement, and do not sit on the toilet for too long.
  • Gently clean your anus with soft toilet paper or moistened towelette after each bowel movement.
  • Avoid heavy lifting or excessive standing or sitting.
  • Exercise regularly.

Treatment

Home care   Home Care

  • Take a warm soaks three times a day.
  • Apply ice packs to relieve swelling and pain.
  • Take Tylenol® or Advil® to help relieve pain.
  • Use nonprescription creams or suppositories such as Preparation H® and hydrocortisone 1% cream to help relieve itching.

 

Professional care   Professional Care

Seek medical attention for:

  • Rectal bleeding that continues for more than two to three days or occurs for no apparent reason
  • Any bulge coming out of the anus from the inside
  • Fever with bloody stools
  • Severe pain from your hemorrhoids