Hemorrhoids (Piles) During Pregnancy

Hemorrhoids (Piles) During Pregnancy - Signs, Symptoms, Causes, Prevention, Treatment, And Home Remedies

Hemorrhoids are the swollen veins in the anus and rectum that cause pain, bleeding, itching. Hemorrhoids are also known as piles. Hemorrhoids or Piles are large and swollen veins inside or outside the anus. Pregnant women who experience constipation prone to get hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids can be painful and can also itch, sting or bleed especially after a bowel movement. It is very common to get them during pregnancy especially in the third trimester of pregnancy. When the enlarged uterus puts pressure on the veins it can cause them to swell and leads to hemorrhoids. As a pregnant woman's body goes through lots of physical changes during the pregnancy period hemorrhoids can cause unwanted irritation but they are not harmful to the health of the baby or expectant mother. Pushing during delivery can worsen hemorrhoids but they usually get better or go away on their own after childbirth. Usually, hemorrhoids go away after delivery but it might be possible that you may have them for a lifetime. Piles can also develop after childbirth as a result of pushing during labor.

Treatment of hemorrhoids during pregnancy

Types of Hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids are of two types:

  • Internal Hemorrhoids
  • External Hemorrhoids

Signs And Symptoms of Hemorrhoids during pregnancy

The signs and symptoms of hemorrhoids during pregnancy are:

  • Blood in Stools 
  • If you notice blood on the toilet tissue when you wipe after a bowel movement.
  • Itching
  • Burning Sensation
  • Painful Bowel Movements
  • Swelling
  • A raised area of skin near the anus

Causes of Hemorrhoids

The common causes of developing hemorrhoids during pregnancy are:

  • When your unborn baby grows your uterus gets bigger and begins to press against the pelvis that causes pressure on the veins near anus and rectum due to which these veins get swollen and become painful. 

  • The level of Progesterone hormone increases during pregnancy that relaxes walls of the blood vessels and makes them more prone to swelling hence contribute to developing hemorrhoids.

  • Straining during a bowel movement causes hemorrhoids.

  • An increase in blood volume can cause pressure on the veins near anus and rectum that causes larger and swollen veins and lead to hemorrhoids. 

  • Standing or sitting for a longer period.

  • Iron supplements can also contribute to constipation that can lead to hemorrhoids. 

Prevention of hemorrhoids during pregnancy 

To prevent hemorrhoids avoid constipation. Avoiding constipation is the key to prevent hemorrhoids during pregnancy. 

Home Remedies to treat hemorrhoids during pregnancy 

Follow these tips to treat hemorrhoids during pregnancy:

Stay well hydrated

Drink plenty of fluids to stay well hydrated throughout your pregnancy. Drink 8-12 glasses of water every day throughout your pregnancy. You can also take some other healthy drinks to meet your daily requirement of fluid intake. Staying hydrated during pregnancy helps to keep your bowel soft and prevent the complication of constipation

Eat a fiber-rich diet

Always include high fiber foods in your diet. Include fiber-rich foods or fruits such as watermelon, beans, prunes, strawberries, apples, raspberries, cucumber, peas, etc. in your diet. A high-fiber diet helps you to keep stay healthy and provides essential nutrients for the healthy growth and development of your unborn baby. The fiber-rich diet also helps you to keep constipation at a bay during your pregnancy. You need to take 25 to 30 gm of fiber daily to stay healthy throughout your pregnancy. 

Do Kegel Exercises

Perform kegel exercises regularly. These exercises help to strengthen pelvic floor muscles and can improve circulation in the rectal area. These exercises are known to stimulate bowel movements hence relieve constipation.

Don't sit or stand for long periods of time

Don't sit or stand for long periods of time. Try to get up and walk a few minutes every hour. Sitting or standing for long periods of time can cause downward pressure on your rectal veins. You can lie on your side to reduce pressure on your rectal area.

Sleep on your side

To relieve pressure on your rectal veins sleep on your side. Sleeping on your side will reduce pressure on the affected area.

Avoid Straining

Avoid straining during bowel movement and also avoid sitting on the toilet for a long period of time. 

Don't hold a bowel movement

Pass bowel movement as soon as you feel the urge holding or delaying it can contribute to constipation that can lead to hemorrhoids. 

Stool Softeners

If the above-described methods failed your doctor may recommend some stool softeners that are safe to take during pregnancy. Some laxatives are not safe to take during pregnancy as they can cause dehydration, electrolyte imbalance or stimulate uterine contractions. Always consult your doctor before taking any stool softener.

Treatment of Hemorrhoids during pregnancy

Hemorrhoids can cause itchiness and pain in the rectal area. You can treat or prevent hemorrhoids by lifestyle modifications and home remedies. You can do the following things to ease itching and pain caused by hemorrhoids: 

Sitz Bath

Take a sitz bath to relieve itchiness or pain in the rectal area or soak your rectal area in warm water for 10-15 minutes several times a day. 

Apply an ice pack or cold compress

Apply an ice pack or cold compress to your rectal area several times a day to reduce swelling and to get relief from pain caused due to hemorrhoids.

Witch Hazel

Use that pads or wipes that contain witch hazel. Use gentle wipes to clean the anal area.

If you've hemorrhoids during pregnancy consult your doctor before treating them at home or before taking any medications. Your doctor may prescribe medications that are safe to take during pregnancy. But don't use any medications on your own. It can be harmful to you and your baby. Always speak to your doctor whether you're taking any medication or applying any medication on the skin. Hemorrhoids are irritating but don't cause any harm to you or your baby. They usually get better after your delivery. So, don't get worried. Seek your doctor help if your hemorrhoids don't go away after childbirth and get worse. It might be possible that your doctor recommends surgical treatment.

Have a happy, safe, and healthy pregnancy. May God bless you and your little one with good health. 

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    Disclaimer: This content is intended for general information only and it should not be used as the basis of patient treatment. The given content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, treatment or any diagnosis. Always consult a doctor for more information. Our website doesn't claim responsibility for this information.

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