You may be embarrassed to need a Cinco Ranch, Texas, hemorrhoid doctor, but hemorrhoids are one of the most common conditions in the United States. An estimated three out of every four adults will experience hemorrhoids. This condition is not serious, but can easily scare patients due to the symptoms.
Hemorrhoids or piles are swollen, inflamed veins in the anus or rectum. There are many causes of hemorrhoids, but the direct cause is often unknown. Even though the cause is unknown, there are many effective treatment options available at home. Changes in behavior also help reduce the chance of developing hemorrhoids.
The symptoms you may experience vary on the type of hemorrhoids you have. There are two primary types of hemorrhoids: internal and external.
Internal hemorrhoids occur inside the rectum and usually have few symptoms. Pain and discomfort are minimal as there aren’t many nerve endings in this area. However, you can expect painless bleeding from the anus, or you may find it in your stool.
Your internal hemorrhoid can make it through the anal opening, also known as a prolapsed hemorrhoid. This prolapse can cause pain and discomfort.
External hemorrhoids are found around the anus and result in more symptoms:
- swelling around the anus
- pain or discomfort
- itching or irritation around the anus
External hemorrhoids can develop into thrombosed hemorrhoids. This occurs when an external hemorrhoid pools with blood from a clot. Thrombosed hemorrhoids are not life-threatening but are more painful. Other symptoms include swelling and a hard lump near the anus.
Hemorrhoids occur when there is an increased amount of pressure in the rectum. Large amounts of pressure cause the veins to swell and become irritated. Pressure can accumulate in the lower rectum by:
- eating low-fiber foods
- being obese
- being pregnant
- sitting or standing for long periods of time
- frequent heavy lifting
- anal sex
- chronic diarrhea or constipation
- straining during bowel movements
Pregnancy and aging increase the chance of hemorrhoids because the tissues within the rectum become weak as they stretch. Since the baby puts weight on the anal region, the veins perform similarly as aging.
Hemorrhoids rarely become serious, but there are certain complications that can increase their severity. Nonetheless, these complications are not deadly.
Anemia: this occurs when there is a lack of healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen to tissues. This is a very rare condition caused by chronic hemorrhoids. Anemia is known to cause constant fatigue, chest pain, headaches, and irregular heartbeats.
Strangulated Hemrrohoid: an internal hemorrhoid cut off from its blood supply becomes “strangulated.” This is not serious, but extreme pain is possible.
Treatment and Prevention
Hemorrhoids typically go away on their own. If you are experiencing symptoms of hemorrhoids longer than a week, you should consider scheduling an appointment with a gastroenterologist. Rectal bleeding can be caused by a number of problems, which is why it is best to see a specialist after one week.
The best methods for treating hemorrhoids are preventative. There are several steps you can take to reduce your chances of developing hemorrhoids. All of these methods can be done from home.
Straining during bowel movements creates a greater amount of pressure in the lower rectum. Holding your breath plays a part in this process, which can increase the chance of hemorrhoids.
Eat High-Fiber Foods
There are a plethora of high-fiber foods you can consume to reduce the chance of hemorrhoids. Fiber is important for bowel movements because it helps soak up liquids and decreases the chance of constipation. Fiber also increases the size and density of your stool. Fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are the best sources of fiber. In addition to these sources, nuts, beans, and legumes are also great options.
Fruits: pears, apples, strawberries, raspberries, avocado, bananas
Vegetables: carrots, beets, broccoli, artichoke, sweet corn, cauliflower, turnip greens
Grains: whole-wheat bread, rye bread, whole-wheat pasta, popcorn, quinoa, oatmeal, brown rice
Nuts: almonds, pine nuts, pistachios, hazelnuts, pecans, macadamia nuts
Beans: navy beans, small white beans, adzuki beans, split peas, lentils, pinto beans, black beans, chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
Legumes: chia seeds, flax seeds, squash seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds
Drink Water Regularly
Alongside your high-fiber diet, drink a lot of water. Water helps soften stool and helps avoid constipation. Drinking water is especially important when it comes to fiber supplements.
The recommended amount of fiber per day is 20 to 30 grams. That is a significant amount and can be challenging to reach. With that said, it can be easier to reach that daily intake with fiber supplements. Many over-the-counter fiber supplements are effective. Most importantly, you must drink a lot of fluids or water. If not, the supplement can cause or worsen constipation.
Regular exercise helps reduce the amount of pressure in the lower rectum. Long periods of sitting or standing can increase the pressure, so avoid those times as much as possible. Exercise is a great way to get a mix of sitting and standing. Additionally, exercise can remove the excess weight that may be contributing to your hemorrhoids.
Finally, when you start having the urge of a bowel movement, go as soon as possible. Holding in a bowel movement can increase the chance of irritating veins and increase the pressure in the lower rectum. Your stool also begins to dry out as you hold it. This creates a problem with passing it, which could be more difficult once dry.
Cinco Ranch, Texas, Hemorrhoid Doctor
Following the prevention methods above will reduce your chance of developing hemorrhoids. In the event you develop chronic hemorrhoids, contact Dr. James Maher’s clinic. His office is located in Katy, Texas. Dr. Maher has more than 30 years of experience diagnosing and treating gastrointestinal (GI) tract conditions.
Hemorrhoids rarely need medical treatments, but Dr. Maher, a Board-Certified Gastroenterologist, is the right professional for the job. Call his clinic today at (281) 945-5190. You’ll be happy Dr. Maher is your Cinco Ranch, Texas, hemorrhoid doctor!
Fun Facts about Cinco Ranch
- Cinco Ranch has 11 community pools!
- The town has an 18-hole course that is free.
- Cinco Ranch’s history dates back before Texas was a republic.
- Learn more about the Cinco Ranch community here.