what causes hemorrhoids and how to avoid the condition

Hemorrhoids are a common condition and do not usually indicate a serious health problem. ¹

Still, it can greatly affect the lives of those who suffer from the disease, causing severe pain and even interfering with basic daily activities, such as sitting and walking. ¹

To prevent it from reaching this level and harming your quality of life, today we have brought you some information on the subject: what causes hemorrhoids , the most common symptoms and what to do to avoid/treat the disease.

Check out!

What is hemorrhoid?

Hemorrhoidal disease, popularly called hemorrhoids, is a condition in which the veins present in the anus become inflamed and/or dilated . ¹

Typically, this scenario occurs when blood becomes stagnant in the anal region, such as when veins that have been dilated during bowel movements do not return to normal. ¹

It is important to know that, naturally, the veins in the anus are already under pressure at all times due to our upright posture. ²

However, when the pressure in the anal region is excessive, the change can occur². Next, see what causes hemorrhoids.

What causes hemorrhoids?

Hemorrhoids can be caused by several factors, such as: 1,2

  • Constipationor intestinal obstipation : causes hard stools and requires greater effort to eliminate them;
  • Pregnancy: due to the pressure that the fetus causes in the region;
  • Obesity: due to the pressure on the abdominal veins caused by excess weight;
  • Sedentary lifestyle: reduces intestinal transit (can cause constipation) and decreases blood flow in the anal region;
  • Anal sex: in addition to the pressure, the act can cause fissures in the region and inflame/dilate blood vessels.

Furthermore, in certain cases, hemorrhoids may be related to genetic factors , regardless of family history or not. 1,2

The constant use of certain medications, such as laxatives , can also inflame the veins in the anus, as can spending a lot of time sitting on the toilet (which causes pressure in the anal region). ²

What are the symptoms of hemorrhoidal disease?

The most common symptoms of hemorrhoids are anal bleeding, itching, pain and prolapse . ³

The intensity of bleeding varies from person to person, and can be seen on toilet paper after cleaning, in feces or even in splashes in the toilet bowl. ³

Itching, when it occurs, is usually quite uncomfortable and affects the area around the anus. ²

It is important to know that pain is not always reported by all patients. While for some the condition is painless, for others it may be continuous pain or only during bowel movements. ³

Prolapse (when the hemorrhoid comes out of the anus) may return on its own after evacuation, or it may be necessary to put it back in. ²

In some cases, it is still possible to notice a secretion (mucus) in the anus. ²

Types of hemorrhoids

Now that you know what causes hemorrhoids and what the most common symptoms are, it’s time to talk about the types that exist.

Hemorrhoids are classified according to their position: they are called external, when they are visible, and internal, when they are located inside the anus. ²

The external type goes outside the anus , as if they were varicose veins or blood pellets. This type is quite uncomfortable, because it can cause pain when sitting and walking, for example. ¹

The internal type is located above the anal sphincter and usually causes more acute symptoms. ¹

How to prevent hemorrhoids?

Knowing how to prevent hemorrhoids is important because the condition can come and go if the necessary care is not taken.

As mentioned, pressure in the anal area is the origin of the problem ¹. Therefore, whenever possible, it is important to avoid overloading this region.

For example: if you have the habit of sitting on the toilet for a long time 1,2 , using your cell phone, when it’s time to defecate or pee, it’s time to stop! This position increases blood flow to the anal canal and can dilate the veins. 1,2

It is also important to take care of your intestinal health, especially by adopting habits to avoid constipation . 1,4

After all, constipation causes hard, dry stools that require more effort to be eliminated. This excessive “force” causes pressure on the anus and can result in hemorrhoids. 1,4

So, start including simple habits in your routine to improve your intestinal flow, such as increasing your consumption of foods rich in fiber and your water intake . ¹

Main treatments for hemorrhoidal disease

Although taking precautions can help, there are risk factors for hemorrhoidal disease that cannot be avoided with daily behaviors, such as genetic issues and anal pressure during pregnancy. 1,2

Therefore, it is important to know which treatments are best suited to treat this problem, if it occurs to you.

In some cases, medication may be recommended, including topical medications such as ointments or suppositories. Typically, medications are specific for hemorrhoidal veins (phlebotonics) and anti-inflammatories. 1,3

If dietary and behavioral changes and medications do not improve the condition, the doctor may recommend surgical treatment, hemorrhoidectomy (which removes the diseased veins). ¹

A blood clot puncture (to eliminate the blood that has stopped at the site) or an elastic ligation, in which the affected veins are strangled, may also be performed. ¹


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