When it comes to things that are a pain in the butt, hemorrhoids top the list. Between the burning and the itching, the difficulty with bowel movements, and the pain of sitting on a chair, it’s no wonder that people seek out home remedies to ease their discomfort. And with hemorrhoids, home remedies and treatments are often all that you need to help you feel—and sit—better. That’s why Dr. Nandi is sharing his favorite natural remedies, enabling you to be your own health hero.
When it comes to hemorrhoids, a warm bath can work wonders. Soak in warm water for 10 to 15 minutes two to three times a day. If you don’t have the ability to relax in the tub, use a sitz bath, a specialized tub that fits in the toilet.
If your hemorrhoids are exceptionally painful or swollen, consider using a cold compress or an ice pack to help diminish swelling and pain. To reduce inflammation, use them every three to four hours for up to 20 minutes at a time.
If the pain and discomfort from your hemorrhoids is too much to handle, reach for an over-the-counter solution. Dr. Nandi recommends the following:
- Hemorrhoid creams
- Hemorrhoid suppositories with hydrocortisone
- Pads with witch hazel
- Ibuprofen or acetaminophen
Good Bathroom Habits
To help with hemorrhoids, you need to develop and practice good bathroom habits. Here are a few to get you started:
- Don’t strain when having a bowel movement
- Don’t wait. When you have to go, go
- Don’t sit too long. If you’ve waited 15 minutes and nothing’s moving, get up and return to the bathroom in about an hour
- Raise your feet when you’re sitting on the toilet. Putting your body in a squat position makes it easier for stools to pass through your lower intestines
Once you’ve had hemorrhoids, you’re more at risk for getting them again. To avoid further hemorrhoids, keep your stool soft. You can do that by eating a variety of fibrous foods, including fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and drinking six to eight glasses of water a day. Having a regularly scheduled bathroom time also helps keep your body regular, which reduces the likelihood of hard stools that can lead to hemorrhoids.
- Don’t use soap on sensitive hemorrhoids, just clean with water
- Avoid dry toilet paper when you have hemorrhoids. Opt for a wet wipe instead
- Use a hair dryer to dry the area after showering or using the bathroom to avoid irritation
- Strive to get 25 grams of fiber a day. Supplement if you must
- Drink prune juice, a natural laxative that can make having a bowel movement more comfortable