Haemorrhoids are painful swollen veins in and around the anus. The swelling can be located inside or outside, depending on the cause and severity of the condition. Most often, haemorrhoids are not a serious medical problem, and over-the-counter treatments can help relieve the swelling and discomfort associated with them.
Over-the-counter haemorrhoid treatments do not require a prescription to relieve the symptoms of haemorrhoids. The ingredients, or methods, help to reduce pain, itching and swelling of swollen tissue. Many treatments that do not require a prescription are home treatment methods that do not require products and use prevention as the best strategy to control haemorrhoids.
Over-the-counter haemorrhoid treatments reduce discomfort associated with haemorrhoids without the high price associated with prescription medications. Reducing the swelling of haemorrhoids will reduce the risk of surgery to remove excessively swollen tissue.
Over-the-counter haemorrhoid treatments include wipes, creams, sprays and suppositories. Witch hazel is often a main ingredient in over-the-counter haemorrhoid treatments for external use. Zinc oxide is another common ingredient in haemorrhoid treatments for external use to help reduce swelling, control bacteria and provide a protective coat to prevent future irritation. Ice can be used to reduce swelling. Phenylephrine HCl is a vasoconstrictor and a common ingredient in suppositories to help reduce swelling. A sitz bath is a small tub that fits over the toilet seat and can be filled with warm water to help cleanse the area and increase blood flow.
Reduce the use of allergens such as dyes and perfumes in soaps used on the area. Reduce constipation by eating plenty of high fibre food and consuming eight to 10 glasses of water per day. Regular exercise can help to promote healthy bowel movements. Avoid prolonged sitting or standing. Clean the area with warm water or a witch hazel wipe as soon as you are done having a bowel movement.
Symptoms of haemorrhoids may be symptoms of other serious and potentially life-threatening medical conditions. If you are not successful at controlling symptoms of haemorrhoids with over-the-counter treatments or home remedies, make an appointment with your doctor to have a medical evaluation to determine if there is a more serious condition.