Hemorrhoids are varicose veins in the rectum or anus that have become inflamed. Hemorrhoids in the rectum are referred to as internal hemorrhoids, while hemorrhoids that develop under the skin around the anus are called external hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids can be caused by sitting on a hard surface for an extended period of time, straining during defecation, diarrhea and long-term constipation. Hemorrhoids cause itching, pain and occasionally bleeding. Fortunately, hemorrhoids are usually self-limiting and can be treated at home.
Add more fiber to your diet. Increase your fiber intake by 5 g a day until you reach 30 g daily. Fiber can help lessen the inflammation and bleeding associated with hemorrhoids. It also softens stool, reducing further irritation to the hemorrhoids.
Drink at least 64 oz. of water a day. Proper hydration works with the fiber to keep stools soft.
Take a sitz bath three times a day and after each bowel movement. Fill a plastic tub with warm water and sit in it for 15 to 20 minutes. Gently pat your anus dry with a soft towel when you are finished. You can purchase a plastic tub for this purpose at most pharmacies. Sitz baths help relieve itching and anal spasms.
Apply an over-the-counter corticosteroid cream to your anus. Put a dime-sized amount of cream on your finger and carefully spread the cream onto your anus. Do not rub it it. Corticosteroid creams soothe the pain and itching caused by hemorrhoids.
Go to the bathroom as soon as you feel the need to have a bowel movement. This will prevent pressure from building up within the rectum, which can make hemorrhoids worse. Do not strain or try to force the bowel movement out.
Partake in 30 minutes of exercise each day to help prevent hemorrhoids from occurring. Fill your bathtub with 2 inches of warm water and sit in it if you can not obtain a plastic tub.
Do not use corticosteroid cream for longer than one week. Do not put corticosteroid cream inside of the anus. Hemorrhoids that cause severe pain or bleeding should be examined by a doctor.