3 Common Hemorrhoid Myths - Debunked

You may eat well-balanced meals, exercise regularly, and see your doctor and dentist for periodic checkups to help you live a healthy lifestyle. However, certain issues may still arise even when following recommendations from your doctor. Although most common in adults between the ages of 45 and 65, hemorrhoids can develop in patients of all ages and genders. These swollen veins in or around the anus and rectum may be common, but most people are too embarrassed to talk about the problem. With this guide on hemorrhoids, you will learn the truth behind a few common myths.

They Look Like Worms

Many people picture worms when they think of hemorrhoids, but that is not an accurate description of this common issue. Hemorrhoids appear like pressed grapes, around the size of a chick pea or walnut. Many patients will develop multiple hemorrhoids that create a cluster of grape-like bulges around the rectum.  

The color can also vary. Hemorrhoids may have a brown, blue, or purplish color. Internal hemorrhoids are a bit more difficult to diagnose, since they are not always visible around the anus. However, blood in your bowel movements is a sure sign that you have internal hemorrhoids.

Spicy Food Causes Hemorrhoids

Hot and spicy foods can irritate the mouth, throat, and digestive system, but they do not have anything to do with the development of hemorrhoids. As a matter of fact, there is no one food that actually causes hemorrhoids.

Of course, hemorrhoids are caused by straining during a bowel movement. Straining and excessive pushing is common when you are constipated, so consuming foods that are loaded with fiber is smart for preventing constipation. Avocado, berries, Brussel sprouts, black beans, legumes, chickpeas, and nuts are all excellent sources of fiber.

Surgery Is The Most Effective Treatment

Treatment will depend on your type of hemorrhoids. Using over-the-counter ointments or suppositories are effective for reducing inflammation around the rectum and numbing any pain.

If the inflammation and pain does not subside with the use of these ointments or suppositories, visit a medical professional. Your doctor may be able to push the hemorrhoid back into the anus, reducing discomfort and inflammation.

If a hard lump has formed around the anus, you may be dealing with a thrombosed external hemorrhoid. These are very painful and will require surgical removal.

Hemorrhoids are not life-threatening issues, but they can cause discomfort that decreases your quality of life. With this guide, you will learn a bit more about the development, diagnosis, and treatment involved with this common medical condition.