Avoiding Piles During Pregnancy

by Garreth Myers

Piles or hemorrhoids are caused by irritated or inflated veins near the rectum. This irritation makes it difficult to pass stools and can cause pain and even bleeding.  Piles are quite common during pregnancy. The severe hormonal fluctuations during pregnancy often cause constipation. Constipation coupled with the additional pressure of the baby drastically increases the risk of piles. Piles usually occurs in the third trimester of pregnancy and invariably they disappear a few weeks after delivery. The main causes of piles in pregnant women are
  • Constipation
  • Increased pressure on the rectum and the perineum
  • Prolonged standing

Prevention

As a pregnant woman, you can prevent piles by making simple dietary changes and lifestyle changes. Drink lots of fluids through the day. Water and natural drinks like coconut water and juice can help ease constipation. Include high fiber items in your diet. The fiber in your food will make it easier to pass stools comfortably. Regular and gentle exercise is also a good preventive measure. Kegel exercises are a good way to gently exercise the pelvic floor muscles. These are exercises tighten the vaginal and rectal muscles. These exercises are also known to help prevent piles in pregnant women.

Treatment

There are simple ways of treating piles during pregnancy. Keep up the regimen of a high-fiber diet and lots of water. You can even try natural remedies like stool softeners or hemorrhoid creams, depending on what your doctor permits you to use.
  • You can try ice pack applications or ice baths to reduce the pain and swelling.  
  • You can even apply petroleum jelly to reduce pain and discomfort when you use the restroom.
  • Lie down and rest as often as possible. Avoid standing for long periods.
  • Clean yourself well to prevent infections. Clean with medicated wipes, especially wipes meant for hemorrhoids. Wipes with witch’s hazel are also soothing as it has an astringent effect.
  • Avoid lifting heavy objects.
  • Don’t apply too much pressure while passing stools. It can aggravate your situation.

If you notice bleeding or a bluish purple tinge in your stools, you need to consult your doctor for a complete piles during pregnancy health care routine. Your doctor may recommend medications and/or suppositories to aid bowel movements and reduce pain and discomfort. Obesity is a risk factor for piles, so women who are overweight during their pregnancy are at a higher risk of suffering from piles.

Reference:
  1. http://www.umm.edu/ency/article/000292.htm
  2. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000292.htm

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.
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