Hemorrhoids or piles are bulging veins in the lower rectum or around the anus. While internal hemorrhoids form inside the anus or rectum, external hemorrhoids form outside the anus. They are not only itchy but also cause pain and bleeding during bowel movements. It is very common among people after the age of 50. But what most patients are concerned about is “how long do hemorrhoids last.” The good thing is that hemorrhoids are curable, but the duration of hemorrhoids may vary from patient to patient.

What are the symptoms of hemorrhoids?

Hemorrhoids are not always painful. Internal and external hemorrhoids have different symptoms, as listed below.

Symptoms of internal hemorrhoids are: 

  • Blood on the tissue after removing stools
  • Protruding skin from the anus during bowel movements
  • Pain during bowel movements

Symptoms of external hemorrhoids include:

  • Intense itching around the anus
  • Formation of blood clots near or around the anus
  • Lumps near your anus 
  • Pain and soreness around the anus
  • Pain while sitting and passing stools

What are the causes of hemorrhoids?

Some causes of hemorrhoids are:

  • Straining when passing stools
  • Sitting for a longer amount of time, especially on the toilet seat
  • Suffering from severe constipation or diarrhea
  • Family history of hemorrhoids
  • Regular heavy lifting 
  • Practicing intensive physical activity
  • Being overweight
  • Pregnancy (During an enlarged uterus presses on the veins in the colon and rectum, causing them to bulge)
  • Having reached the age of 50

How long do hemorrhoids last?

Hemorrhoids occur due to various causes, and the duration of hemorrhoids varies from patient to patient. 

  • If your hemorrhoids are tiny, your symptoms may go away on their own in a few days. Simple dietary and lifestyle changes may also be necessary.
  • Prolapsed hemorrhoids are internal hemorrhoids that swell to the point that they protrude from the anus. These might take longer to heal and may require medical attention. 
  • Hemorrhoids in pregnant women are common. This is due to the increasing pressure in the uterus, particularly during the third trimester, which may cause the veins in the rectum and anus to dilate. Pregnancy hormones may also increase the likelihood of swelling of veins. If you get hemorrhoids while pregnant, the symptoms may linger until your baby is born.

Can hemorrhoids return?

Hemorrhoids might recur after you’ve had them. In a study, researchers compared the recurrence rate of hemorrhoids in 231 persons. Some study participants were treated at home, while others underwent surgery to eliminate their hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids recurred in 6.3% of those who underwent surgery and 25.4% of those who received at-home treatment.

Also, Read Best Homeopathic Medicine for Piles Treatment.

Treatment options for Hemorrhoids Relief – 

The nature and severity of hemorrhoids determine the treatment of hemorrhoids. Most hemorrhoids resolve on their own with modest lifestyle and dietary modifications. Only a few minor cases of hemorrhoids necessitate medication and nonsurgical treatment. When all other treatment options have been exhausted, severe cases may necessitate surgery. Let’s look at all the treatment options you can choose from.

Over-the-counter Medications – 

Hemorrhoid medications are available in the following forms: ointments, topical creams, gels, suppositories, lotions, and pads. Itching and pain can be relieved with medicated lotions like phenylephrine gel. However, before beginning any treatment, you should consult with your doctor. 

Prescription Medications – 

If over-the-counter treatments are ineffective, your doctor may prescribe more effective ointments. Among the most widely recommended topical medicines are:

  • Corticosteroids: These can help lessen the inflammation caused by hemorrhoids. However, long-term usage of corticosteroids might cause skin damage.
  • Lidocaine: It functions as a local anesthetic when combined with tribenoside. This combination can aid in the restoration of blood vessels as well as the reduction of inflammation.
  • Phlebotonic drugs: These medications can alleviate hemorrhoid symptoms and minimize bleeding.
  • Zinc oxide: Zinc oxide creams can assist in relieving anal itching caused by hemorrhoids.

Nonsurgical Treatments

Nonsurgical treatments are equally effective; they include:

  • Rubber band ligation: This method includes wrapping a rubber band around the hemorrhoids to cut off the blood flow, causing the hemorrhoids to shrink and fall off.
  • Infrared photocoagulation: This procedure employs a gadget that directs infrared light at the hemorrhoids. The heat from the infrared light reduces blood supply, causing hemorrhoids to shrink.
  • Sclerotherapy: It is a treatment in which a fluid is injected into the hemorrhoids to obstruct blood supply and promote shrinking.
  • Electrocoagulation: During this operation, doctors use a device to transmit an electric signal to hemorrhoids, which cuts off blood supply and causes them to shrink.

Surgical treatments – 

Only a small number of people with severe hemorrhoids get the surgery done. Doctors only recommend surgery when all other treatments fail. Hemorrhoidectomy and hemorrhoid stapling are surgical procedures used to treat hemorrhoids. 

  • Hemorrhoidectomy: The doctor uses an anesthetic to remove external or prolapsed internal hemorrhoids. 
  • Hemorrhoid Stapling: After administering the required dose of an anesthetic, the doctor uses a stapling tool to remove internal hemorrhoid tissue and draw a prolapsing internal hemorrhoid into the anus. 

What are the risk factors for hemorrhoids?

Among the risk factors are:

  • Age
  • Pregnancy
  • Obesity
  • Family history
  • Anal intercourse
  • Regular constipation or diarrhea
  • Not consuming enough dietary fibers 
  • Overusing enemas or laxatives 
  • Excessive straining during bowel movements

How to prevent hemorrhoids?

  • Try not to strain during bowel movements. To reduce the risk of piles or hemorrhoids, use the restroom as soon as you sense a bowel movement.
  • Drink plenty of Fluid to keep your stool from becoming firm.
  • Promote regular Exercise to avoid constipation.
  • Avoid prolonged sitting, especially on hard surfaces such as concrete or tile.
  • Consume fiber-rich foods since they soften the feces and make it easier to pass.

Conclusion – 

Hemorrhoids are caused by excess pressure on the rectal veins. It is common for hemorrhoids to pain, itch, and bleed. However, how long your hemorrhoids will last will vary from patient to patient. While small hemorrhoids resolve quickly, prolapsed hemorrhoids take longer to heal. Pregnant women will continue to have hemorrhoid symptoms until their baby is born. Thankfully, hemorrhoids can be treated. Just consult a doctor, tell them your issues, strictly follow the medications, and you are good to go! Hope you may have understood “How Long Do Hemorrhoids Last?” and What to do?

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