How to tell if you have hemorrhoids?
- Watch for symptoms
- Be aware of similar conditions
- Consult your doctor
As with most diseases, hemorrhoids are best treated if caught at the earliest possible stage. If you figure out that you have hemorrhoids quickly and apply prompt treatment, then there’s a good chance that it will heal right away. If you know how to tell if you have hemorrhoids, they wouldn’t be able to give you any problems.
Most people are not aware of the specific symptoms of hemorrhoids, and because it’s understandably scary and uncomfortable. Some would even deny their existence, even when they’re feeling the symptoms already. Hemorrhoids can sometimes go away on their own without treatment, but it is more advisable to treat the condition instead of letting it be because it can lead to more complications.
The first thing to do is to learn about the symptoms of hemorrhoids and watch out for them. Finding out if you have hemorrhoids is tricky because sometimes, it wouldn’t even present any symptoms. In this case, you need to learn about the risk factors and be more watchful for any changes in your body. You should also learn other conditions that have similar symptoms with hemorrhoids, and consult your doctor when needed.
Watch for symptoms
Hemorrhoids are very common — over 75% of people contract this condition at some point in their lives, whether they’re aware of it or not.3 Older people are more at risk so it occurs more as you age, but cases have been recorded in all age groups. This means that no matter what age you are, you could have some hemorrhoids without feeling any other symptoms.
There are also different types and grades of hemorrhoids, all with their own set of symptoms. These symptoms are our body’s way of telling us that something’s wrong, and we have to listen. Here are some of the general symptoms that you might feel if you have hemorrhoids:
- Itching around the anal area1
- Pain and discomfort1
- Blood with bowel movements1
- A hard lump in the anal region1
All of these symptoms happen because hemorrhoids are caused by swollen veins in or near the rectum. It could happen internally or externally, and both can cause some bleeding from your anus. Internal hemorrhoids will cause bleeding during bowel movements, but they would be painless. External hemorrhoids can cause more discomfort and interfere with your daily life.
Be aware of similar conditions
Some of the symptoms of hemorrhoids are similar to other conditions that affect your anal region. Rectal bleeding itself may be caused by other, more serious diseases like colon cancer. Hemorrhoids are not as life-threatening as other diseases, and they can be cured by home remedies and medication. But it is still advised by doctors that people who experience rectal bleeding above 40 should be evaluated by a doctor.
As an extra precaution, here are some conditions that have similar symptoms as hemorrhoids:
- Anal fissures – can also cause pain and bleeding3
- Pruritis ani – can cause itching and burning3
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) – causes rectal bleeding and discomfort3
- Genital warts – can cause bleeding and discomfort3
- Colon or rectal cancer – causes rectal bleeding3
These diseases and conditions are often mistaken for hemorrhoids, so once you feel the symptoms, pay attention to other changes happening to your body before jumping to conclusions. But the best course of action is to consult your doctor.
Consult your doctor
The best way to be certain about your condition is by consulting your doctor about it. If your hemorrhoids don’t cause too much pain and don’t affect your daily life too much, you can stick to medication and home remedies to cure it. But if it has already worsened, then consulting a doctor is the right thing to do. Here is what happens when you consult a doctor for hemorrhoids:
Medical History – Your doctor will take your medical history first — your past diseases, the medication you take, your family’s history with hemorrhoids, and more.4
Physical Exam – The doctor will do a physical on your anus, checking for signs of lumps, swelling, internal or external hemorrhoids, skin irritation, anal fissure, and others. 4
Other procedures – During your doctor’s visit, they might opt to run other procedures like an anoscopy or a rigid proctosigmoidoscopy. They will use special instruments to get a better look at the inside of your rectum.2/4
The earlier you can catch the signs and symptoms of hemorrhoids, the faster and better your body will be able to heal. If you know how to tell if you have hemorrhoids, it could save you plenty of time, money, and discomfort. Make sure you know the symptoms, you’re aware of similar conditions, and you’re ready to consult the doctor if necessary.
As mentioned earlier, you can treat hemorrhoids by using medicine alone. One of the most effective medicines for the job is Diosmin + Hesperidin (Daflon 1000)! It is an MPFF medicine that works to strengthen your veins, including the ones in the anal area. You can learn more about it here, or direct your questions to us directly!