Here are tips to relieve your hemorrhoids in pregnancy otherwise your pregnancy could become a living nightmare. As a certified nurse midwife I have treated many cases of pregnancy hemorrhoids. It was not until I personally experienced a small pregnancy hemorrhoid myself that I understood how painful these little monsters can be.
Hemorrhoids are swollen varicose veins on or around the anus. The veins within the anal canal become swollen because of weakened vein walls allowing blood to pool. This causes the walls of the vein to expand creating the visible ball on the outside of the anus called a hemorrhoid.
Pregnancy requires a woman to increase her total blood volume by 40% to accommodate her growing baby’s nutritional and circulatory needs. This increase in blood volume requires that the pregnant woman's blood vessels relax and expand to hold the extra blood. This is one of the major reasons why pregnant women are prone to blood clots, varicose veins and pregnancy hemorrhoids.
Pregnant women are also prone to constipation due to extra fluid absorption and relaxation of the bowels. Constipation combined with the increased pressure on the rectum and perineum due to the growing baby is another reason for the development of pregnancy hemorrhoids.
You cannot see or feel internal hemorrhoids, but straining or irritation from a passing stool can injure a hemorrhoid’s delicate surface and cause it to bleed. You may notice small amounts of bright red blood on your toilet tissue or in the toilet bowl water. Because internal anal membranes lack pain-sensitive nerve fibers, these hemorrhoids usually do not cause discomfort.
Occasionally, straining can push an internal hemorrhoid through the anal opening. If a hemorrhoid remains displaced (prolapsed), it can cause pain and irritation. External hemorrhoids tend to be painful. Sometimes blood may pool in an external hemorrhoid and form a clot (thrombus) causing severe pain, swelling and inflammation. When irritated, external hemorrhoids can itch or bleed. The pain of hemorrhoids may be comparable to being stabbed in the rectum by a knife.
The good news is that pregnancy hemorrhoids usually improve after the baby is born. In the meantime, there are a number of things you can do to treat them. One or more of the following tips may help relieve your symptoms:
• Take a warm bath with baking soda or place baking soda (wet or dry) on the area to reduce itching.
• Use witch hazel to reduce swelling or bleeding.
• Use Tucks Medicated Pads.
• Avoid sitting or standing for long periods.
• Drink plenty of fluids, at least 12 glasses of water every day.
• Drink prune juice. • Do not delay going to the bathroom.
• Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables.
If you are suffering very badly from pregnancy hemorrhoids please consult with your obstetric provider for hemorrhoid medication. If you are very uncomfortable sitting due to rectal pain, a ring with a hole in the center may be very helpful. Balancing your energy within the 1st -Root Chakra can help reduce hemorrhoids. Real How...
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Hannah Bajor author, midwife of 30 years,
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Hannah bridges traditional reproductive health and energy medicine
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