Hemorrhoids and Constipation

By Stephanie

Hemorrhoids and constipation. It was a dark and stormy night. Winds blew violently outside and screams were heard from behind the bathroom door…the hemorrhoids were back in town.

Okay, so it might not be all that dramatic, but when one is dealing with the effects of hemorrhoids, they can certainly feel like screaming, with or without the storm outside.

How Do I Know it's Hemorrhoids?

If you are experiencing abnormal pains both externally and internally of your rectal wall, there are three possible culprits for this agony. First, let’s identify which of these you are actually experiencing.

1. Hemorrhoids

Special hemorrhoid veins within the rectal wall and on the anus can become inflamed and engorged due to abnormal straining, pushing or downward pressure (as in a pregnancy).

External swollen hemorrhoid veins can itch and cause a burning sensation.

2. Anal fissures

A completely different monster are anal fissures. They are simply tears in the anal lining, also caused by constipation, loose stools and child birth.

A tear in the lining can cause the presence of blood in the stool along with sharp and burning pain at the anal opening. I personally also experienced slight chills throughout my body upon getting an anal fissure.

3. Proctalgia Fugax

This condition is the seizing up of the muscles within the anal walls, causing extreme pressure and the urge to poop, even though there may be no actual stool present. Most that experience this have anal walls which have been thickened over time.

Having experienced this myself multiple times, it is a frustrating and very painful experience that normally hits during the night.

Hemorrhoids and Constipation
What Are the Facts

As stated above, constipation is one of the primary causes of the development of hemorrhoids.

The pressure and friction caused by passing large pieces of stool can play havoc on hemorrhoid blood vessels, irritating them and sometimes causing them to bleed

Do I have hemorrhoids?

Wikimedia image

Hemorrhoid blood vessels are a special blood vessel found in the rectum and anus.

In the picture to the right,

  • hemorrhoids on the left are swollen, and on the right are the proper size

  • Internal are in purple, external are in blue.

The job that hemorrhoids perform are three-fold:

  1. They serve as a cushion between hard, dry stool and rectal muscles

  2. They swell with blood to help prevent stool leakage when the rectum is at rest

  3. When we tighten rectal muscles, they help to prevent stool from exiting by swelling with blood 

When hemorrhoid blood vessels experience excessive straining and downward pressure, they swell up, forming large lumps, both inside the rectum and on the surface of the anus. The lumps located on the anus, or piles as they’re also affectionately known, can cause severe burning, itching, and soreness even when we are walking or just sitting in a chair.

Wikipedia images

Internal or external hemorrhoids

Internal hemorrhoids, located in the rectum, have no nerve endings. When they elongate too far, they can even hang out a little, giving an unpleasant “something’s there” sensation.

External hemorrhoids are veins under the skin. When they are inflamed, the skin covering them, which DOES contain nerve endings, can burn and itch, and be painful to sit on.

Both internal and external hemorrhoids can be caused by the pressure of constipation. 

Do hemorrhoids cause constipation

It is possible that the pain of hemorrhoids might cause a person to avoid going to the bathroom. Fighting the urge to go is definitely one of the causes of constipation.

This, however, is rare. In most instances it is constipation that puts undue pressure on the hemorrhoid blood vessels, causing them to swell and become inflamed.

Treating Hemorrhoids

Once hemorrhoids enlarge, the best way to alleviate them is to remove what caused them to form in the first place, giving the body an opportunity to heal itself.

Most always this means dealing with hemorrhoids AND constipation. Besides this, there are four medical options for permanent relief:

  1. Surgery – surgically cutting away the hemorrhoid and permanently cutting off its blood flow.

  2. Banding – a small tool is used to secure a tiny rubber band around the hemorrhoid; after some time the hemorrhoid, starved of blood supply, will shrivel up and fall off.

  3. Injections –the area can be injected with a solution which creates a scaring effect over the area. This eliminates blood flow to the hemorrhoid to stop the pain.

  4. Cauterization – the area can be burned shut which causes the hemorrhoid to shrink off and end its painful reign.

Please keep in mind that when you destroy a hemorrhoid, you destroy it’s functions, resulting in:

  • Bowel leakage. Your hemorrhoids can no longer swell with blood to seal off the anus

  • Damage to rectal muscles. If you destroy your hemorrhoids, they can no longer act as a cushion between hard stool and contracting muscles

Shrinking and preventing hemorrhoid swelling

Don’t want to do any of the above more extreme routes for hemorrhoid relief?  You can keep the pain of hemorrhoid inflammation at bay simply by controlling constipation.

Treating constipation

My dad and mom both had problems with hemorrhoids and constipation. One day they started taking a mineral supplement rich in magnesium, and discovered that it was also helped with regular bowel movements. Once constipation was gone, the hemorrhoids just disappeared on their own.

It does make sense. If constipation is the major cause of hemorrhoid inflammation, getting rid of constipation is the best thing you can do to get rid of them.

Blessings for a hemorrhoid and constipation free life

If you are currently battling the frustrating and painful effects of hemorrhoids and constipation, I hope this article will help you to walk into freedom.

I hope you are blessed along your own journey and that you find permanent hemorrhoid and constipation relief. Thanks for stopping by.

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