Postpartum Problems-Hemorrhoids After Childbirth
Veins that have become swollen and engorged with blood are called hemorrhoids (varicose veins). A lot of women experience them for the first time during pregnancy or the postpartum period for many reasons, such as a rush of hormones, internal pressure, and constipation. Know all about hemorrhoids after childbirth. The severity can range from mildly irritating to extremely painful, but most of the time, hemorrhoids aren’t serious and will usually go away with home treatment.
Treating hemorrhoids after childbirth
These swollen pea like veins appear in the rectal area and in severe cases can become the size of a grape. There are internal hemorrhoids – where the veins are swollen inside the sphincter and external hemorrhoids – where the veins protrude or hang outside the anus.
Hemorrhoids are itchy and sometimes painful. Sometimes, especially after a bowel movement, they can cause rectal bleeding.
What Causes Hemorrhoids
For pregnant or postpartum women, hemorrhoids are often caused by stress on the perineum during pregnancy and delivery. Veins push blood back to the heart, and when they become weakened, they can swell with blood. Pregnant women have an increased production of the hormone progesterone, which also causes veins to relax.
New moms are prone to constipation after birth. Straining to have a bowel movement, can cause a flare-up of the hemorrhoids, The fear of having to go again can cause some women to hold it in, which then causes additional constipation.
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There are a few ways to treat your hemorrhoids after childbirth at home:
- Wrap ice or a cold pack in a cloth and apply to the area for about 10 minutes.
- Try a sitz bath, several times a day. Soak in the bathtub.
- Alternate between cold ice packs and the warm sitz baths.
- Clean the area gently, but thoroughly by using a squirt bottle filled with warm water.Pat the area with a wet wipe instead of using harsh dry toilet paper. Hemorrhoid pads that contain witch hazel can be very soothing.
- Talk to your healthcare provider about over-the-counter hemorrhoid treatments, such as topical ointments and suppositories. Only use products recommended by your health care provider. This is of the utmost importance if you’ve had an episiotomy or tear.
- Lie down as much as you can to take the pressure off your tush.
- For temporary pain relief, you can take acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
There are other things you can do in addition to your home treatments:
- Avoid and/or treat constipation.
- Do your Kegel exercises.
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When to Call Your Healthare provider
If your hemorrhoids are aggressively persistent even though you’ve been treating them for a few weeks, or if you experience rectal bleeding, you definitely want to talk to your doctor or midwife. In some extreme cases, you may need to see a specialist and surgery may be needed.
For new moms, hemorrhoids after childbirth can be a pain in the tush, but with the right treatments, you should be feeling better in no time.
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