Skip to content


Your cart is empty

Article: Coping with Hemorrhoids During Pregnancy

Coping with Hemorrhoids During Pregnancy

Hemorrhoids are a common discomfort experienced by many pregnant women. Hemorrhoids are swollen veins in the rectal area, causing pain, itching, and discomfort. Pregnancy hormones, increased blood volume, and the pressure of the growing uterus can contribute to the development or worsening of hemorrhoids during pregnancy. Understanding the causes and implementing effective coping strategies can help alleviate symptoms and provide relief. In this blog, we'll discuss how to cope with hemorrhoids during pregnancy and provide helpful tips to manage this common pregnancy concern.

Causes of Hemorrhoids During Pregnancy:

  1. Increased Blood Volume: The increased blood volume during pregnancy puts additional pressure on the veins, including those in the rectal area, leading to the development or worsening of hemorrhoids.

  2. Hormonal Changes: Pregnancy hormones can relax the walls of blood vessels, making them more prone to swelling and inflammation, contributing to the development of hemorrhoids.

  3. Pressure on the Rectal Area: The growing uterus puts pressure on the veins in the rectal area, causing them to become swollen and painful.

Coping Strategies for Hemorrhoids During Pregnancy:

  1. Maintain Good Hygiene: Clean the affected area gently after each bowel movement using fragrance-free, unscented baby wipes or a moistened soft cloth. Avoid using harsh or scented products that can further irritate the area.

  2. Soothing Warm Baths: Soak in a warm tub of water for 10-15 minutes to help relieve itching, pain, and inflammation associated with hemorrhoids. Avoid hot water, which can worsen the symptoms.

  3. Use Ice Packs or Cold Compresses: Apply an ice pack or a cold compress to the affected area for 10-15 minutes at a time to reduce swelling and numb the area, providing temporary relief.

  4. Topical Treatments: Over-the-counter creams, ointments, or suppositories containing ingredients like witch hazel or hydrocortisone may help reduce itching and inflammation. Always consult with your healthcare provider before using any medications or treatments during pregnancy.

  5. Fiber-Rich Diet: Eat a well-balanced diet that includes high-fiber foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes. Adequate fiber intake helps soften the stool and promote regular bowel movements, reducing the strain on hemorrhoids.

  6. Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep stools soft and prevent constipation, which can worsen hemorrhoid symptoms.

  7. Avoid Straining During Bowel Movements: Take your time when using the restroom and avoid straining. If necessary, use a stool or footrest to elevate your feet slightly while sitting on the toilet to promote a more natural bowel movement position.

  8. Gentle Cleansing: Instead of wiping with dry toilet paper, use wet wipes or a bidet to clean the area after bowel movements. Pat the area dry gently with a soft towel or use a hairdryer on a cool setting.

  9. Don't Sit or Stand for Prolonged Periods: Avoid sitting or standing for long periods as it can increase pressure on the rectal area. Take breaks and try to incorporate regular movement into your day.

  10. Kegel Exercises: Kegel exercises, which involve contracting and relaxing the muscles of the pelvic floor, can improve blood circulation and tone the muscles around the rectal area, potentially relieving hemorrhoid symptoms.

  11. Sitz Baths: A sitz bath is a shallow basin or tub filled with warm water that allows you to soak the rectal area. This can provide relief by reducing swelling and soothing irritation. Follow the instructions provided by your healthcare provider on how to take a sitz bath.

  12. Wear Loose and Comfortable Clothing: Wear loose-fitting clothing, particularly around the waist and the buttocks area, to avoid additional pressure on the hemorrhoids. Choose breathable fabrics that don't cause friction or irritation.

    1. Manage Constipation: Constipation can worsen hemorrhoid symptoms. To prevent constipation, consume a fiber-rich diet, stay hydrated, and consider talking to your healthcare provider about safe stool softeners or laxatives suitable for pregnancy.

    2. Don't Delay Bowel Movements: When you feel the urge to have a bowel movement, respond to it promptly. Delaying bowel movements can lead to the stool becoming harder and more difficult to pass, increasing the strain on hemorrhoids.

    3. Pelvic Floor Exercises: Strengthening the pelvic floor muscles through exercises like Kegels can help improve blood flow to the rectal area and potentially alleviate hemorrhoid symptoms.

    4. Consult with Your Healthcare Provider: If your hemorrhoid symptoms persist, worsen, or become very painful, consult with your healthcare provider. They can provide additional guidance, suggest safe treatment options, and ensure there are no underlying complications.

    5. Avoid Sitting or Standing for Long Periods: Prolonged sitting or standing can worsen hemorrhoid symptoms. Take regular breaks to move around, and try alternating between sitting and standing throughout the day to relieve pressure on the rectal area.

    6. Consider Medication Under Medical Supervision: In some cases, if conservative measures are not providing sufficient relief, your healthcare provider may prescribe medication or recommend a specific treatment plan to manage hemorrhoids during pregnancy. Always follow their guidance and ensure any medications are safe for pregnancy.

    Remember, each pregnancy is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another. It's important to listen to your body, make modifications as needed, and consult with your healthcare provider for personalized advice and recommendations.

    In conclusion, coping with hemorrhoids during pregnancy involves maintaining good hygiene, using warm baths and cold compresses, using topical treatments under medical guidance, consuming a fiber-rich diet, staying hydrated, avoiding straining during bowel movements, practicing proper cleansing techniques, incorporating movement and exercise, wearing loose clothing, managing constipation, responding to bowel movements promptly, consulting with your healthcare provider, avoiding prolonged sitting or standing, and considering medication under medical supervision if necessary. By implementing these strategies, you can effectively manage hemorrhoid symptoms and find relief during your pregnancy.

Read more

Pregnancy and Leg Cramps: Causes and Relief

Leg cramps, also known as muscle spasms or charley horses, are a common discomfort experienced by many pregnant women. These cramps typically occur in the calf muscles and can range from mild to in...

Read more

Understanding and Managing Pregnancy Anemia

Anemia is a common condition that occurs when there is a decrease in the number of red blood cells or a low level of hemoglobin in the blood. Pregnancy anemia is specifically diagnosed when this co...

Read more