Category Archives: Hemorrhoid prevention

This Was Minnesota’s Most Googled Health Condition of 2018 | Minnesota

When you think of medical conditions or illnesses related to Minnesotans, you may assume something along the lines of frostbite, pneumonia, dry skin, or just anything related to the state’s extremely cold winters. However, a study of the most frequently Googled health condition in every US state in the past year revealed that the Land of 10,000 Lakes is most concerned about…hemorrhoids.

Credit: Medicare Health Plans

According to Patch, Medicare Health Plans first tapped Google Trends to identify the most-searched medical terms overall, then added conditions for a second search to find out which states had the highest search volume for each medical condition.

Despite hemorrhoids coming in number one for Minnesota, it doesn’t necessarily indicate a high prevalence of hemorrhoids amongst Minnesotans. A higher search rate for a specific condition may simply show “what people in a specific area are most concerned about regarding their health or the health of a loved one.” For example, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) was the most Googled condition in nine states, but this doesn’t signify that ADHD is vastly prevalent in all nine states.

But it’s clear that Minnesotans ARE concerned about hemorrhoid care and hemorrhoid prevention. At One Stop Medical Center, we offer a range of treatment options tailored to each patient’s needs. For more information on hemorrhoid care, please contact us at (952) 922-2151, or visit our Edina office at 6545 France Avenue South, Suite 290.

 

Try These 8 Tips to Relieve Constipation | Minnesota

Constipation is one of the most common bowel disorders affecting American adults, with roughly 20 percent of the population suffering from hard, painful stools. Defined as having fewer than three bowel movements per week for several weeks, constipation occurs when the colon absorbs too much water from the food passing through it, creating dry stool that’s extremely difficult to pass.

While constipation is never pleasant, there are a few ways to manage and improve symptoms so that other complications—like hemorrhoids—don’t set in. Below are a few tips for boosting your bowel movements:
 
1. Eat more apples – This juicy fruit is packed with pectin fibre, which has been found to help relieve constipation and slow down the absorption of excess dietary fats, making you feel fuller for longer. The sorbitol in apple juice also has a laxative effect.

2. Eat more raisins and figs – If apples aren’t your thing, perhaps these two dried fruits can be added to your diet. High in fiber, raisins and figs are even more beneficial to your digestive system when soaked in water.

3. Exercise more – Being more active is always beneficial to your health! Hitting the gym or simply going for a jog outside helps aid food breakdown and reduce the time it takes food to move through the large intestine. The less time food sits in your colon, the more water it retains to help ease stool passage later.
 
 
4. Hydrate – Retaining water in your stool is the key takeaway here, so drinking more fluids is critical. When you don’t drink enough water, your body absorbs more water from the food you eat in order to make up for the imbalance.

5. Try over-the-counter medications – For a quicker fix, laxatives (used in moderation) can help with constipation. These substances work to loosen your stools and increase bowel movements pretty quickly.

6. Don’t hold your poop – If you feel even the slightest urge, go to the bathroom! Holding your bowel movements causes stools to sit longer in the colon, increasing the amount of water absorbed. Definitely not what we want!

7. Drink some coffee – Despite being a diuretic that can dehydrate you if consumed in large quantities, coffee has been shown to stimulate the muscles in your digestive system. Small amounts of soluble fiber in coffee can also boost the balance of your gut bacteria.

8. Try probiotics – Studies have shown that Bifidobacterium, a bacteria of the gastrointestinal tract, can aid in digestion and reducing constipation. Yogurt, fermented vegetables (kimchi, miso, sauerkraut), cured meats, vinegar and sourdough bread are good options for increasing your probiotics intake.

 

Excessive Smartphone Usage May Be Giving You Hemorrhoids | Minnesota

The average American spends over five hours per day scrolling through Instagram feeds, checking Twitter, answering emails and texts, and watching Netflix—all via smartphone devices and, more often than not, while sitting. Add in the extra layer of using these mobile devices during bathroom trips, and most of us have significantly increased our risk of developing hemorrhoids.

A 2015 survey found that 9 out of 10 people bring their mobile device with them to the bathroom, a habit that leads to unnecessary extra time on the toilet. While doctors recommend that you spend no more than 10 minutes at a time sitting on a toilet, being absorbed in the contents of your phone can easily extend that window to 15-20 minutes or longer.

This prolonged sitting time can then cause excess pressure on your rectal veins and increase your hemorrhoid risk. Additional straining may also cause existing hemorrhoids to engorge, swell and bleed. In general, your bowel movements should last somewhere between 3-10 minutes, as anything longer may indicate constipation.

Furthermore, another major concern of using mobile devices in the bathroom is the risk of fecal contamination. A 2017 study of high school students’ smartphone usage showed that these devices can cling to E.coli and other bacteria, potentially making mobile devices even dirtier than toilet seats. Gross.
 

Tips for Better Bathroom Habits

  • Only sit on the toilet for as long as you need to. If there isn’t an actual urge for a bowel movement, don’t force it.
  • Do NOT sit and strain for long periods of time. The more you strain, the more irritated those rectal veins will become!
  • Set a timer if you get distracted easily so that you’re aware of how long you’ve been sitting.
  • Always wash your hands before leaving the bathroom, and try to wipe down your smartphone!
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    The Potential Health Benefits of Elephant Foot Yam | Minnesota

    Alternative MedicineYes, you read that correctly—elephant foot yam is loaded with potential medicinal benefits and may even improve hemorrhoidal symptoms. This alternative medicine has long been used in Ayurveda, a traditional system of medicine rooted in the Indian subcontinent whose practices have recently been globalized. Used to treat numerous conditions such as sperm quality, liver and spleen disorders, and hemorrhages, elephant foot yam just may be the next big home remedy for treating hemorrhoids as well.

    The thickened, underground part of the yam’s stem, known as tubers, is often prescribed as medicine in Ayurveda to treat hemorrhoids, dysentery, asthma, vomiting and abdominal pain. While it is typically used as a blood purifier, tubers can also be made into a paste to externally treat arthritis pain.

    In treating hemorrhoid symptoms, elephant foot yam can be prepared as a medicine called “suran vataka,” recommended to be taken in small capsules (1-2 grams each) both morning and evening on an empty stomach. While the exact treatment results are unclear due to the yam’s alternative nature, this has long been a prescribed treatment method for patients in India suffering from hemorrhoid/bowel discomfort.
     

    Other Potential Health Benefits of Elephant Foot Yam

  • The cooling effect of the yam can be a cure for hypertension.
  • The yam may help reduce cholesterol levels.
  • It can serve as an anticoagulant (blood thinner) to improve blood flow.
  • Elephant foot yam may even help maintain hormonal balance in women by increasing estrogen levels and relieving them of pre-menstrual syndrome.
  • The presence of Vitamin C can help delay aging.
  • Elephant foot yam may also benefit patients who suffer from acute rheumatism.
  • Irregular bowel movements and constipation may be cured through consuming elephant foot yam.
  • It may help reduce muscle spasms.
  •  
    Please note that while elephant foot yam may help with hemorrhoid symptoms, anyone who suffers from hemorrhoid discomfort should see a doctor for a full evaluation. Home remedies certainly help with symptoms, but it’s always best to see a doctor for a complete, thorough treatment method.

     

    5 Potential Side Effects of Taking Stool Softeners | Minnesota

    When considering temporary hemorrhoid treatment options and lifestyle changes to help battle hemorrhoid flare-ups, stool softeners are almost always recommended. Because hemorrhoids often develop as a result of constipation and overstraining during bowel movements, taking stool softeners is an efficient short-term option for easing stool passage.

    However, every drug has its side effects. While stool softeners are generally well-tolerated by hemorrhoid patients, there are a few potential side effects that can cause discomfort.
     
     
    Stomach Cramps

    Because the ingredients in stool softeners aim to soften your stool for easier bowel movements, there’s a chance that you’ll experience stomach/intestinal cramps. Your digestive tract, which was previously constipated, is now suddenly being affected by changing stool habits. Make sure to drink plenty of water while taking stool softeners to help prevent cramping.
     
    Diarrhea

    If you exceed the recommended dosage for your stool softener, your stool may become overly runny and loose, potentially leading to over-passage of stool. If diarrhea does occur, drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration
     
    Nausea & Vomiting

    Whenever your digestive tract is affected, there’s always the risk of nausea and vomiting. If vomiting occurs, stop taking the stool softener immediately, as severe vomiting can lead to dehydration and more extreme digestive issues.
     
    Allergic Reaction

    While allergic reactions to stool softeners are fairly rare, they can occur. Hives, difficulty breathing, rashes, and swelling in the lips, hands and tongue can all potentially develop. In these cases, immediately stop taking the stool softener; call 911 if a severe allergic reaction occurs.
     
    Rectal Bleeding

    This side effect is more uncommon, but if rectal bleeding or irritation occurs, call your doctor immediately.
     

    If you experience any of the above side effects, stop using the stool softener and call your doctor to discuss alternative treatment methods.
     

    Ways to Manage Proctalgia Fugax Pain | Minnesota

    While the term “proctalgia fugax” (pronounced proh-TAL-ja few-gacks) may sound completely obscure, the rectal condition actually affects up to 18 percent of Americans. The Latin term literally translates to “fleeting rectal pain” and is characterized by intensely painful, sporadic rectal or anal spasms that last anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes. Sometimes described as feeling like a severe muscle cramp or like a knife is shoved up one’s rear end, proctalgia fugax is extremely unpleasant to experience. However, home remedies can help alleviate some of the pain and discomfort.

    One of two primary functional anorectal pain syndromes, proctalgia fugax occurs as a result of cramping of the levator ani muscle. Attacks are more common in the middle of the night, but they can occur during the daytime as well. The pain is usually so intense that patients must stop what they were doing and attempt to alleviate the discomfort or wait until the spasm subsides. While these episodes typically only occur a few times per year, some patients have reported feeling pain almost everyday. While attacks are technically spontaneous and unpredictable, certain lifestyle factors such as stress, anxiety, excessive sitting and defecation may trigger episodes.

    Roughly 80 percent of patients suffering from proctalgia fugax do not seek medical attention due to the infrequency of their attacks, and the condition, thankfully, does not cause lasting damage. However, it’s helpful to know some effective pain reliever options, as well as lifestyle changes to potentially prevent future attacks.

    Medications: Topical glyceryl nitrate (pain-relieving drug), nerve blockers, muscle relaxers, hemorrhoid creams

    Warm baths: To relax the anal muscles and potentially reduce the chance of spasms

    More potassium: Food like bananas, cantaloupe, spinach, potatoes and oranges are rich in potassium and can aid in preventing spasms

    More vegetables: More vegetables and whole grains mean more fiber and less chance of constipation, which in turn reduces straining of the anal muscles. Natural vegetable powder can also help produce softer stool

    Relaxation techniques: Reduce stress and anxiety via meditation, deep-breathing exercises and yoga

    Pelvic muscle retraining: Pelvic muscle exercises, such as kegel exercises, can help strengthen and relax muscles in that area.

     

    Major Moments in Hemorrhoids History | Minnesota

    Hemorrhoids have plagued humans for thousands of years, with the earliest known mention of its symptoms dating back to roughly ~2250 BC in the kingdom of Babylon in the Code of King Hammurabi. Fast forward to 1700 BC in Egypt, and we stumble upon the first-ever recorded case of hemorrhoids, which also happened to highlight an important topical wound ointment.

    The first use of the word “haemorrhoids” in the English language occurred in 1398. The term derived from the Old French word “emorroides,” taken from Latin derivative “hæmorrhoida-ae,” which in turn originated from the Greek word for “haimorrhois.”

    Below is a timeline of key events in the history of hemorrhoid development:
     

    Hemorrhoid History: A Timeline

    ~2250 BC: Babylon Code of King Hammurabi described the symptoms of hemorrhoids

    1700 BC: Egyptian papyrus pronounced a topical astringent lotion

    1552 BC: Egyptian medical record detailed remedies for hemorrhoids

    1046 BC: Old Testament, 1 Samuel 5:9 Philistines punished with “emerods”, and in 1 Samuel 5:12 People who moved the Ark to Ekron were punished with “emerods”

    460–375 BC: Hippocratic Treatises described hemorrhoid treatment by cautery and excision, and first recorded use of speculum to inspect the rectum (endoscopy)

    25 BC–AD 50: Celsus describes Pile ligation

    41–68: Roman physician Dioscorides defined Aloe Vera use for easing hemorrhoids

    130–200: Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius’s physician Galen pronounced hemorrhoids treatment ointment containing laxatives and leeches. He also explained thread use to tie off piles causing them to shrivel up

    4th–5th Century: Indian Susruta Samhita text defined clamp and cautery use

    5th–10th Century: Arab physician El-Zahrawy defined cautery irons use, whilst Byzantine physicians ligated with thread on the hemorrhoid base, before amputating

    1307–1370: John of Ardene’s exposition transcribed hemorrhoids and fistula treatment, and enemas use

    1806: Modern era of endoscopy was piloted by Bozzini with his aluminum tube to expose the genitourinary tract

    1835: St.Marks Hospital London was founded by Frederick Salmon providing modern hemorrhoids and fistula treatment

    1849: Introduction of anal dilation for hemorrhoids treatment

    1935: St.Marks Hospital further developed excision and ligation methods at the hands of ETC Milligan and C Naughton Morgan – nowadays defined as the gold inhemorrhoidectomy standard

    1952: Modification to the Milligan-Morgan procedure introduced by Ferguson

    1955: A.G. Parks’ developed his closed method surgical treatment the hemorrhoidectomy

    1963: J Barron developed an out-patient rubber band procedure to tie hemorrhoids

    1970: Development of cryotheraphy, diathermy, infrared coagulation and laser cauteries

    1975: PH Lord developed his anal dilation hemorrhoid treatment method, whilst WHF Thompson postulated that hemorrhoids developed from anal cushions that are part of the normal anatomical structures

    1997: Italian A Longo introduced his stapled hemorrhoidectomy procedure for prolapsed hemorrhoids
     
    Due to lack of studies and documentation on hemorrhoids, as well as lack of patients seeking medical assistance, the exact prevalence of hemorrhoids is unknown. However, it’s estimated that roughly half of Americans develop hemorrhoids by age 50, with roughly five percent of the US population affected.

    The outlook for hemorrhoid treatment and rehabilitation is generally positive. While some individuals suffer from flare-ups and recurring hemorrhoids, only a small portion of patients require surgery.

     

    Battling Hemorrhoids? Try These Exercises to Alleviate Symptoms | Minnesota

    Dealing with hemorrhoid discomfort can be a real pain (literally). In addition to visiting your doctor for a full exam, home remedies and lifestyle changes can help with relieving hemorrhoid symptoms. One important activity that can significantly assist your hemorrhoid prevention progress is exercising, which can include anything from simple walking to more intense cardio workouts.
     

    Kegel Exercises

    Also referred to as pelvic exercises, kegel exercises strengthen the muscles in the pelvic area and can help prevent hemorrhoids by increasing blood flow to the anal region and improving blood circulation. Strong anal muscles provide good support for internal hemorrhoids while also preventing existing ones from enlarging or protruding. Kegels can also help tighten tissues and control leaking around hemorrhoid problem areas.

    The most basic Kegel exercise consists of simple pelvic muscle contractions. Similar to squeezing your pelvic region when you feel the need to urinate, squeeze and hold that same movement for five seconds. Release and relax for five seconds. Repeat this exercise 10 times per session, three times daily.

    And contrary to popular belief, kegel exercises can be done by both men and women!
     

    Brisk Walking

    One of the easiest activities to incorporate into your daily lifestyle, brisk and regular walking for 20-30 minutes daily can help with hemorrhoid symptoms. Begin by walking slowly to warm up. Increase your pace after a few minutes to increase your heart rate and improve your body’s blood circulation.

    Remember: the goal is to improve blood flow to your pelvic region, so walking keeps your body upright rather than sedentary on a couch.
     

    Aerobics/Cardio Workouts

    Aerobic exercises are ideal for treating hemorrhoid symptoms, as they get the blood flowing and help relax any strained muscles in the lower part of the body. Performing aerobics—or other forms of cardio—regularly improves blood circulation not only throughout the entire body, but also to the pelvic/anal regions. On top of that, more cardio workouts means more sweat and drinking more water; aerobics can also help you avoid constipation, one of the primary causes of hemorrhoids. Good examples of aerobic activities are running, swimming, spinning/cycling, dancing, and aerobics classes.

     

    These Everyday Habits May Be Giving You Hemorrhoids | Minnesota

    As unpleasant as hemorrhoids may sound, they are, believe it or not, quite common. With over three million cases reported each year, hemorrhoids are merely swollen veins caused by pressure on the bowels. While major lifestyle changes, such as pregnancy, can cause hemorrhoid development, many cases actually develop from seemingly insignificant everyday habits that build up over time. From diet choices to fitness and movement, below are a few common habits to be mindful of if you’re worried about hemorrhoids:
     
    1. Not enough fiber – Low fiber intake can lead to constipation, which directly causes overstraining during bowel movements and, thus, inflamed veins. Try to aim for 25-50 grams of fiber everyday, eating more whole grains, fruits, vegetables, beans and nuts. For more on increasing your fiber intake, check out our post on the best and worst foods for preventing hemorrhoids.
     
    2. Straining/overexerting yourself during workouts – If a weight is too heavy, DON’T force yourself. Suddenly increasing weight amounts too quickly puts a burst of pressure on your lower region, which is NOT what you want for your blood vessels.
     
    3. Sitting too long on the toilet – Sitting for too long is never a good thing for your body! Hemorrhoids usually worsen or develop when there’s an increased, downward pressure, so the longer you sit on the toilet checking Twitter, the more your blood pools downward and adds pressure to the veins. Adding onto the fiber point above, eating more fiber should help increase the speed of your bowel movements and prevent added toilet-squatting time.
     
    4. Eating too much processed food – Fast food, frozen meals and pre-packaged junk food are absolutely terrible diet options, as they contain few nutrients and loads of sodium. They also contain inflammation-promoting ingredients that increase constipation and bloating. Avoid!
     
    5. Sitting for long periods of time – It’s not just excessive toilet-sitting that’s frowned upon. Sitting and binge-watching four straight hours of Keeping Up With the Kardashians will essentially produce the same negative results. Decreased mobility can cause blood flow to also decrease, and blood is more likely to gather up/pool in the anal veins, causing irritation and swelling that can develop into hemorrhoids.
     
    6. Not hydrating enough – Along with increasing your fiber intake, drinking more fluids (preferably water) throughout the day helps promote good digestion and proper stool passage. Aim for at least eight cups of water daily.
     
    If you do develop hemorrhoids, you may be able to alleviate discomfort using these home remedies. However, it’s important to still visit your doctor for a full examination and treatment rundown.

     

    The Best & Worst Foods to Eat When You Have Hemorrhoids | Minnesota

    Dealing with hemorrhoids is no walk in the park, but knowing the right kinds of food to incorporate into your daily diet can make a major difference in treating and preventing flare-ups. While it’s always encouraged to fill your diet with high-fiber foods, the vast amount of fiber-filled options can be pretty overwhelming! Below is a quick and dirty breakdown of the best and worst foods to consume while dealing with hemorrhoids.

     

     

    BEST FOODS

    EAT plenty of fruits and vegetables. Apples, berries, broccoli, leafy greens and winter squash are great options. It goes without saying that fruits and vegetables provide valuable nutrients, and most people don’t consume enough of them. In addition to easing constipation symptoms, fruits and vegetables add bulk to your stool and may reduce strain during bowel movements.

    EAT whole grains. Oatmeal is one of the most popular whole grain foods, as well as whole grain breads, brown rice and popcorn. Whole grains have NOT been refined and contain all the nutritious parts of the original grain, providing more fiber, protein and micronutrients.

    EAT more legumes (beans, lentils, nuts). Black beans, almonds, chickpeas and edamame contain large amounts of fiber even in very small portions. The legume family is also credited for helping decrease blood sugar levels and increase healthy gut bacteria.

    EAT flax, hemp and chia seeds. These are all good sources of soluble fiber.

    DRINK LOTS OF WATER! In addition to helping with your increased fiber intake, water throughout the day is crucial for good digestion. Aim for at least eight cups of water daily.

    Remember: Shoot for 25-50 grams of fiber everyday. Too much fiber in one sitting can cause gas and bloating, so be sure to add it to your diet in small increments.
     

    WORST FOODS

    AVOID refined grains. This includes white bread, bagels, white rice and pretty much anything made from white flour. Refined grains have been milled, which removes the bran and germ and, consequently, any nutrients the grain originally contained.

    AVOID processed foods as much as possible. Fast food, frozen meals and pre-packaged junk food are absolutely terrible options, as they contain few nutrients and tons of sodium. They also contain inflammation-promoting ingredients that increase constipation and bloating.

    AVOID excessive alcohol. This can be tough, but alcohol dehydrates your body and can lead to constipation and disrupt the digestive balance in your stomach.

    AVOID dairy. Milk and cheese products can irritate hemorrhoids since they often cause gas and bloating, which can contribute to hemorrhoid pain and stomach cramps if you are already constipated.

    AVOID fried, salty food. Fries, fried chicken, fritters, the list goes on. These items scream inflammation and can cause your body to hang onto water, putting more pressure on your blood vessels. More pressure means more likelihood of developing hemorrhoids. Fried foods are also difficult to digest.

    AVOID spicy food. Again, inflammation.
     
     

    How Aging Increases Your Chances of Getting Hemorrhoids | Minnesota

    As we grow older and experience a variety of physical and mental changes to our bodies, we also become more susceptible to disease and illness. Because our regenerative powers slowly decrease over time, our bodies have a tougher time battling symptoms as we age—making hemorrhoids all the more common and bothersome.

    How Aging Affects the Development of Hemorrhoids

    Hemorrhoids, which develop when the veins in the anus and rectum become distressed and swollen, are much more of a threat when the body is sedentary. Decreased mobility (and increased amounts of time sitting), typically associated with aging, can cause blood flow to the lower part of the body to also decrease. The blood is then more likely to gather up/pool in the anal veins, causing irritation and swelling that can develop into hemorrhoids.

    Older individuals are also more prone to constipation as a result of having a more sedentary lifestyle. The straining that occurs from constipation, due to passing hard and dry stools, can cause prolonged stress to the anal and rectal veins. Once the blood vessels in these veins become extremely irritated, hemorrhoids can develop.

    Preventing Hemorrhoids in Old Age

    Diet Changes

    Hemorrhoids in the elderly can be effectively prevented by making conscious diet and lifestyle changes. A high-fiber diet helps maintain healthy bowel movements, thereby lowering chances of constipation and anal vein swelling. Consuming more fruits and vegetables, as well as legumes (chickpeas, lentils, soybeans) and whole grains (oatmeal, brown rice, barley), easily adds more fiber to your diet.

    Oatmeal bowlChickpeas

    DRINK. MORE. WATER. Consuming plenty of fluids helps keep the bowel healthy and functioning, and stools remain soft. This further prevents constipation and lowers your chances of having hemorrhoids.

    Exercise

    For elderly individuals who are capable of moderate levels of exercise, this is another good way to improve overall bowel movement and lower body blood circulation. Daily short walks, light swimming, and gardening are all appropriate examples of moderate exercise. However, you should always consult your doctor before starting any new diet or exercise routine.

    Treating Hemorrhoids at Home

    If the above prevention methods fail, and you find yourself with pesky hemorrhoids, there are a few home remedies that can help alleviate your symptoms. Sitz baths (soaking the affected area in warm water for 10-15 minutes) can soothe anal tissues and decrease pain and discomfort. Oils and creams may also be good options for early-stage hemorrhoids, such as witch hazel ointment or witch hazel hemorrhoidal pads.

    If symptoms do not clear up (or become worse) despite home treatment efforts, make sure to see a doctor for a full examination and advanced treatment method.

    Hemorrhoid Diet and Preventing hemorrhoids | Minneapolis & St Paul

    There is a strong correlation between diet and hemorrhoids. Turns out that what you eat, and what it subsequently turns into, has a huge effect on the health of your bowels- and that includes hemorrhoids, those pesky swollen veins that no one wants to talk to their doctor about. Basically, repetitive stress on the vascular hemorrhoidal cushions causes the supporting tissue to weaken and become inflamed, which results in the hemorrhoids getting blown up like a balloon. Trust me, you don’t want any balloons down there. With the skin and tissue stretched so thin, it can tear and bleed onto your toilet paper, an alarming sight for anyone procrastinating at work. It can get a lot worse than that too, like if it develops into an external hemorrhoid, becomes thrombosed, or, god forbid, gets infected. But that’s not what this is about. Today we’re talking prevention.

    There are three big things when it comes to hemorrhoids: stool hardness, toilet habits, and inflammation. Don’t strain too long or too hard on the toilet, as it puts pressure on the hemorrhoids.

    Have you gotten your fiber today? It’s recommended that women consume at least 25 grams of fiber a day, and that men consume 30-38 grams of fiber a day. Most likely, you’re one of the 95% of people in America that don’t get the proper fiber intake they need. Fiber adds bulk to stool, making it easier to pass and reducing the chance of constipation. Constipation is problematic. The less fiber you eat and water you drink, the harder your stool. The harder your stool, the more constipated you get. The more constipated you get, the more you strain. The more you strain, the more pressure you put on the hemorrhoidal cushions, and, well, you know the rest.

    Good toilet habits: move your bowels as soon as you feel the urge; Do not sit on the toilet for long periods of time.

    Inflammation is swelling. increased blood flow. Heat. Irritation. Hemorrhoids. Diet can be a big factor in inflammation. Here are a few things to take note of:

    -Reduce refined carbohydrates and animal products
    -Reduce alcohol consumption
    -Get enough micro minerals such as zinc and chromium
    -Get enough essential fats such as Omega-3 fats
    -If possible, don’t be overweight

    Ten Ways to Temporarily Alleviate Symptoms of Hemorrhoids | Minneapolis & St Paul

    You come home one day and in the bathroom you notice blood on the toilet paper after you wipe. It might hurt, and it might be itchy, and, like most adults, you probably haven’t been meeting your daily requirement for fiber lately. If you tick all these boxes, well, congratulations! You probably have hemorrhoids! and you should call your doctor’s office to make an appointment for the evaluation and treatment, especially when you have rectal bleeding. While you wait for your doctor’s appointment, you can start treating the rectal symptoms by yourself to temporarily alleviate the hemorrhoidal symptoms.

    1. Keep the area clean and dry. Do not wipe or rub vigorously.
    2. Take sitz bath in warm water for 15-20 min, 2-3 times a day and after every bowel movement. Sitz baths will help relieve discomfort and clean the area.
    3. Good toilet habits: move your bowels as soon as you feel the urge; Do not strain and bear down; Do not sit on the toilet for long periods of time.
    4. Avoid constipation by eating plenty of high-fiber foods, drink plenty of fluids, and exercise. If your diet is lack of fiber, y can also take two tablespoons of fiber supplement. If you develop constipation with hard stool, you may use a stool softener with or without laxative.
    5. Do not stay seated for more than two hours.
    6. Avoid heavy lifting for a few weeks.
    7. Do not drink alcohol or reduce alcohol intake.
    8. Apply hemorrhoid creams.
    9. Witch Hazel is found in many OTC hemorrhoid creams, you may use it since Witch hazel is an astringent that reduces swollen hemorrhoids.
    10. Put cold on the hemorrhoids every 5 minutes for a few times if you have the flair-up with swollen prolapsed hemorrhoids.

    Pregnancy and Hemorrhoids | Minnesota

    Going to the doctor again for hemorrhoids is one of the last things a woman wants to deal with after pushing a child out of their body, but the only thing less appealing than that is actually having hemorrhoids. Pregnancy brings a lot of changes to a woman’s body, one of which is an increase in progesterone, a hormone that is responsible for regulating pregnancy. Aside from one of the greatest joys in life, progesterone also causes one of the greatest inconveniences: hemorrhoids. The combination of progesterone and intense pushing during labor makes hemorrhoid a common ailment among women.

    One of the things that can affect the likelihood of developing hemorrhoids during pregnancy is whether the birth is vaginal or a C-section. A vaginal birth is much more likely to result in hemorrhoids, due to all the pushing and strain on the anorectal area. Straining that area of your body can cause hemorrhoids whether your pregnant or not (so don’t spend too much time reading the news on your phone in the bathroom), and anyone that has had experience with childbirth will know that women have to push very very hard, and that’s putting it lightly.

    C-sections are less likely to result in hemorrhoids because the entire process of straining and pushing the baby through the birth canal is avoided. However, this all depends on how much straining the pregnant woman does before the procedure.

    Usually, very conservative treatment is given to women with hemorrhoids, as additional stress from a procedure is usually not the best for a pregnant woman. Typically, fiber intake, topical ointments, and cold packs are enough to manage hemorrhoids. However, in more severe cases, a procedure may be required to deal with it. In this case, it is best to go with your doctor’s recommendation as to what is best for you and the baby.

    Normal Things that Can Give You Hemorrhoids | Minnesota

    There are few things more annoying than suffering from hemorrhoids. Even with Grade I hemorrhoids, you will usually find out when there’s blood on their toilet paper or occasional itching and irritation around anus. God forbid it becomes Grade IV mixed hemorrhoid. It’s ghastly sight. Who wants to see that? You notice the blood and feel the itch, as well as mild anxiety- you look up the symptoms, and WebMD tells you that you probably have hemorrhoids. Then you have to pretend like you don’t have a itchy swollen bleeding vein in your rectum while you talk to your coworkers. And you’ll wonder: what did I do to deserve this?

    Well, a lot of things. You’re probably doing one of them right now. Old habits die hard, or give you hemorrhoids. Here’s a list of everyday things that are actually giving hemorrhoids:

    Straining too hard/long- Your colon and rectum can only take so much straining while you relieve yourself. This is usually because of constipation or diarrhea, or because you had eyes glued to your phone for 25 minutes. Eat your beans and keep trips to the bathroom short.

    Weight/pregnancy- Putting on weight of any kind is going to put pressure on your rectum. And, for those who are overweight, diet and aerobic exercise will help keep you in shape and prevent hemorrhoids.

    Lifting too hard/long- If your job often requires heavy lifting, or you never figured out how to deadlift correctly, the physical strain can injure your rectum and give you hemorrhoids.
    Being born- Unfortunately, some people are just more genetically inclined to get hemorrhoids. For whatever reason, God decided you were gonna have weak easily-swollen veins that’ll start bleeding at 27.

    Thankfully with modern medical technologies like IRC and old, but reliable rubber band ligation and surgical excision, and an ever growing understanding of hemorrhoids, even those destined to have an itchy rectum can still have a normal, nuisance-free existence.

    Kegel Exercises and How They Can Help to Prevent Hemorrhoids | Minneapolis & St Paul

    Hemorrhoids, a disease that affects almost 75% of people at some point in their lives, can be a real nuisance for a busy adult. The itching, bleeding, and pain of hemorrhoids make them as annoying as they are unsightly, and getting rid of them may take a while or require going to a doctor’s office, which is why the best way to deal with hemorrhoids is preventing them from occurring in the first place!

    Exercise may help to prevent hemorrhoids. Many people are under the impression that exercise can make hemorrhoids worse or even cause hemorrhoids, but this is only true for certain exercises such as weightlifting, typically due to bad form. Certain exercises are very good for hemorrhoid relief.

    One method is kegel exercises. Kegel exercises, also known as pelvic exercises, involve contracting and relaxing the pubococcygeal, or PC, muscle in the pelvic floor in order to strengthen it. It’s the same muscle you contract and relax in order to go to the bathroom. They are commonly used to prevent urinary incontinence as well as other pelvic floor problems. Doing this exercise regularly may also reduce the chances of hemorrhoids, and can be done discreetly almost everywhere, either sitting, standing, or lying down, and requires no equipment, so it’s great to do it at work or at home!.

    To perform a kegel exercise:
    Squeeze the PC muscle for 3 seconds
    Relax the PC muscle for 3 seconds
    Perform steps 1. and 2. in succession for 10 reps
    Take a 30 second break and perform the set of 10 reps two more times
    3 sets of 10 reps should performed three times a day

    This is by no means the only way to do kegels- feel free to modify as you see fit.

    9 Tips for Recovering After Infrared Coagulation (IRC) Treatment of Hemorrhoids | Minnesota

    If you’re suffering from hemorrhoids, Infrared coagulation (IRC) is often an initial treatment of choice, especially for early stage of internal hemorrhoids. In this procedure, an intense infrared light heats the hemorrhoidal tissue, creating scar tissue that blocks blood supply to the hemorrhoid, which shrinks and dies.

    In general, IRC is a very safe office procedure that takes less than a minute in each treatment. It is relatively painless and no anesthesia or painful injections are needed. It produces very good results in the early stages of hemorrhoids with minimal complications and quick recovery. The recovery time after IRC treatment is minimal with very little pain or discomfort. It is important to take care of the rectal area after the IRC procedure to avoid a recurrence of the hemorrhoids. Here at the Procedure Clinic in Edina, MN, we offer the following tips on recovering from IRC treatments.

    1. Keep the area clean and dry. Do not wipe or rub vigorously.

    2. Take sitz bath in warm water for 15 min, twice a day and after every bowel movement. Sitz baths will help relieve discomfort and clean the area.

    3. Good toilet habits:
    a. Move your bowels as soon as you feel the urge.
    b. Do not strain, bear down, or hold your breath during a bowel movement.
    c. Do not sit on the toilet for long periods of time. If you cannot empty your bowel, you may re-visit the toilet at a later time.

    4. Avoid constipation and straining during bowel movements:
    a. You are encouraged to eat plenty of high-fiber foods, drink plenty of fluids, and exercise. The high fiber food includes vegetables , fruits, , beans, and whole grains.
    b. If your diet is lack of fiber, y can also take two tablespoons of any over the counter fiber supplement such as natural wheat bran, natural oat bran, flax, Benefiber with a lot of water.
    c. If you develop constipation with hard stool, you may use a stool softener with or without laxative.

    5. Do not stay seated for more than two hours. Do the muscle exercise by tightening your buttock muscles 10 times and take 10 deep breaths every a couple of hours.

    6. Avoid heavy lifting for a few weeks.

    7. Do not drink alcohol or reduce alcohol intake.

    8. Apply hemorrhoid creams when the symptoms flair up.

    9. Be sure to follow your doctor’s instructions.

    When to Call Your Doctor
    Problems are not common with the IRC treatment. However, if there is a substantial amount of bleeding, severe pain, chills, fever or difficulty passing urine (very rare), you should call your doctor to seek medical attention.

    Importance of Diet in the prevention and treatment of hemorrhoids | Minnesota

    The importance of diet to the prevention and treatment of hemorrhoids is often understated. Even for the most severe hemorrhoids, good diet is important for proper treatment and recovery. To prevent and manage hemorrhoids, one must ensure that they take in enough fiber. Fiber is interesting, as it’s not a nutrient in the same sense as minerals and vitamins are, but that doesn’t mean it’s not important. Most dieticians agree that Americans don’t eat enough fiber- the recommended amount is 32 grams per day. The average American doesn’t even come close at 15 grams a day. In fact, research shows that a whopping 97% of Americans do not meet the minimum nutritional standard.

    So what is fiber exactly?

    Fiber is a carbohydrate, the same class as starches, sugars, but are different because they are not digestible by the human body. Fiber regulates your body’s sugar intake, and keep hunger and blood sugar in check.

    Fiber comes in two varieties, soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber can be dissolved in water, lowers glucose levels, maintains blood cholesterol, and most importantly, ensures passage of stool without constipation thanks to its water-absorbing properties. It’s contained in barley, nuts, seeds, beans, lentils, etc. Insoluble fiber is found in wheat bran, vegetables, and whole grains. Insoluble fiber adds bulk to stool, which helps food pass quickly through the intestines. It’s what your grandmother might have called “roughage”. It’s the tough parts in stalks, stems, and seeds. The positive effects of fiber on your digestive system help prevent and manage the symptoms of hemorrhoids.

    What are good foods for fiber?

    Beans, lentils, and nuts all contain large amounts of fiber. Just a half cup of beans will have about 7-10 grams of fiber, about a third of your daily minimum, containing a mixture of soluble and insoluble fibers. Beans are fairly cheap, as well as a good source of protein. Almonds and pecans have around 3 grams of fiber per half cup, as does edamame.

    Grains are another great source. Look for whole-grain items as opposed to the white variety. Bread, pasta, and crackers made from flours, buckwheat, cornmeal, or rye will contain insoluble fiber. Oats and barley will also contain fiber. Lots of cereals have fiber, either naturally or added artificially- fiber containing cereal is a good way to start the day!

    Fruit and vegetables contain loads of fiber, and also have many other nutritional benefits.

    Plant foods with skin contain insoluble fiber as well as flavonoids that help control intestinal bleeding. Fruit with lots of colour and darker vegetables contain a lot of fiber. Adding fruit to cereal, apples to salad, spinach with eggs, or zucchini in spagheti are great ways to add fiber.

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