Hemorrhoids are swollen veins in the anal canal and lower rectum. Hemorrhoids burn, itch, hurt and bleed when they flare up. Hemorrhoids are caused by physical stress, usually while straining during a bowel movement. Fortunately, there are home cures that can help treat hemorrhoids.
Consume more dietary fiber. Fiber picks up water and waste as it travels through the body. Add fiber to your diet slowly, since a sudden increase can cause gas, diarrhea and painful abdominal cramps. Fiber is found in a variety of foods. Grains such as whole wheat, whole rye, brown rice, cornmeal, oatmeal, rolled oats and bran are a good source of fiber. Other sources of fiber include carrots, cabbage, corn, green beans, lettuce, kidney beans, lentils, apples, oranges, pears, figs, prunes, apricots and raisins. One key to adding more fiber in your diet is to ensure that you keep your fluid intake up to eight to 10 glasses a day. This will help ensure soft bowel movements.
Regular exercise keeps your digestive system moving. When the digestive tract slows down you can become constipated. This means that it will take more pressure to move your bowels, which will aggravate your hemorrhoids. Your exercise routine does not have to be aerobic or strenuous. A brisk walk lasting 30 minutes can be sufficient.
Keep clean especially after a bowel movement. Fecal matter left on the skin can irritate hemorrhoids. Vigorous rubbing with dry toilet paper can cause hemorrhoids to hurt and bleed. Use plain water to rinse the hemorrhoid area and pat dry. Dust the area with cornstarch powder. Be sure to rinse the area thoroughly while bathing. Soap residue causes itching and burning when left on hemorrhoids. Use a compress to sooth your hemorrhoids after cleaning. Soak a soft cloth in witch hazel and place on the hemorrhoids. Leave on for five to 10 minutes.
Take a sitz bath for 30 minutes three to four times a day for hemorrhoid relief. Sprinkle dried echinacea and St. John's wort in the water. These herbs have antibiotic and painkilling properties. Sit in six inches of warm water on an inflatable doughnut cushion. This exposes the area to the bath water. The warm water is beneficial to hemorrhoids and will reduce pain while increasing blood circulation. This helps reduce swollen blood vessels and promotes healing in the hemorrhoids.
- The Home Remedies Bible, Timothy Gower, 2006
- Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs, Rodales Press, 1998
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