Don’t Be Shy with your Doctor about Embarrassing Gastrointestinal Symptoms - Tucson Local Media: Health & Wellness

Don’t Be Shy with your Doctor about Embarrassing Gastrointestinal Symptoms

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Posted: Sunday, August 17, 2014 10:00 pm | Updated: 1:32 am, Mon Aug 18, 2014.

(StatePoint) The most uncomfortable afflictions are often the most embarrassing. And anorectal health issues can interfere with almost everything one does, from sitting on a bus to enjoying a meal out with friends.

If you suffer from an uncomfortable and at times, painful condition like hemorrhoids, you’re not alone. In fact, millions of Americans -- particularly those between the ages of 20 and 50 -- are affected by hemorrhoids. Additionally, other anorectal disorders can have similar symptoms.

So ditch the embarrassment and use this knowledge to feel empowered to discuss your issue with your doctor. He or she can diagnose the issue properly and offer you tips for relief. In the meantime, here are a few things you can do to address the problem on your own.

• Change your exercise routine:  While regular physical activity can improve your cardiovascular health and help you to maintain a healthy weight, certain types of activities can cause hemorrhoids. Straining from weight lifting, for instance, may cause the veins near the anus and rectum to become swollen, eventually leading to this condition. Cycling may also exacerbate the issue. Talk to your doctor about exercises that are safe for you.

Don’t rush in the bathroom: Rushing and pushing can cause excessive straining and increase pressure on rectal veins. When you are done, don’t linger. Sitting on the toilet longer than necessary can aggravate your discomfort.

Lose weight: Excess weight in your abdomen can increase your chances of developing hemorrhoids.

• Seek relief: You don’t necessarily need a prescription to relieve the pain, itching and burning associated with hemorrhoids and other anorectal disorders. If your doctor confirms you have hemorrhoids, look for an over-the-counter topical, local anesthetic at your drugstore, such as RectiCare Anorectal Cream, which contains the highest lidocaine strength available without a prescription.  It works quickly to help soothe discomfort. In addition, each tube comes with a supply of “finger cots,” little covers that fit over the finger, to promote hygienic application.

Visit www.RectiCare.com for more information.

• New diet: If your hemorrhoids are caused by constipation, try adding more fiber to your diet to get to the root of the problem. And remember to drink plenty of water alongside any meal.

Whether you’re walking down the drugstore aisle or talking with your doctor, seek the relief you need without embarrassment. Anorectal problems are more common than you think.

Photo Credit: (c) Monkey Business - Fotolia.com

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