Hemorrhoids are enlarged blood vessels in the rectal area, which cause pain, and at times, bleeding. The condition can develop in anybody, not necessarily only in pregnant women. However, it develops in pregnant women due to high hormone levels, which relaxes the veins. Consequently, hemorrhoids during pregnancy is also not an uncommon condition. While some women develop them within the first months; others get them during labor. But, not all cases of internal and external hemorrhoids require therapeutic intervention. In fact, they usually resolve on their own, after childbirth.

Symptoms

In the general population, hemorrhoids or piles occur in 50% of adults. As compared to others, pregnant women have a higher risk of developing this condition, mainly because of the increased weight and elevated progesterone levels. Also, constipation and irregular bowel movements may add to the risk of developing them during pregnancy. Their size may resemble that of a raisin, or it may be as large as a grape.

In many cases there is little or no discomfort, while in some cases itching, pain, and burning sensation in and around the anus can be observed. Also, itching is associated with rectal bleeding, especially during bowel movement. The limitation of this condition during pregnancy is the restriction in using treatment medications, unless recommended by a doctor. However, certain home remedies can be used to manage the symptoms.

Treatment

As pregnancy is a crucial phase, even a mild health condition can't be taken lightly. The same is applicable to pregnancy induced hemorrhoids. Even though the condition resolves on its own after birth, a woman should take certain precautions to minimize the risk of bleeding. Fortunately, there are few safe approaches for their treatment during pregnancy. Given below are some of the natural remedies for their treatment during pregnancy.
  • For instant relief, one can apply cold compresses in the affected area. Put ice cubes in a clean cloth and dab the anal region with it. The cold treatment will reduce swelling and the pain.
  • Taking warm water bath and soaking the bottom in lukewarm water are few other approaches. A simple way is to use a sitz bath over the toilet. Also, alternating cold and warm compresses is best for pain relief.
  • Also, check the diet plan and ensure that loads of fiber-rich foods are included in the daily diet. This will help in maintaining regular bowel movement, which is a key tip in reducing hemorrhoid pain and bleeding.
  • Another method is use of medicated wipes, that are specially prescribed for patients with piles. Use unscented, alcohol-free, soft or pre-moistened tissue to wipe the area gently.
  • Hemorrhoids pads that are made with witch hazel extract is a good remedial solution to combat discomfort symptoms. Also, they are safe for pregnant women. But, remember to purchase them from a good brand.
  • Other tips include: not sitting in the same position for long hours, keeping the anal area clean, and performing mild movements. Drinking ample amounts of water is a simple remedy to treat constipation and piles.
In case the condition does not improve with home remedies, do not delay in taking medical help. Consulting a doctor is of utmost importance, if the woman experiences frequent rectal bleeding while straining for defecation. The doctor may recommend safe suppository or topical anesthetic, along with exercises for their treatment. As far as laser treatment is concerned, it is not recommended for pregnant women.