Friday, March 21, 2008

Hemorrhoids and suppositories

Hemorrhoids thrombosis can be an uncomfortable and embarrassing situation. The symptoms include pain or burning when defecating, pain when sitting, itchiness, and bright red blood from the rectum. Everyone has hemorrhoids, hemorrhoid thrombosis is simply swollen blood vessels. There are many in-depth websites full of information about hemorrhoids - try googling it if you are looking for more information.

If you are looking for herbal solutions to hemorrhoids you know you have then read on. If you are unsure whether or not you have hemorrhoids, please seek medical help for a proper diagnosis. Hemorrhoids can easily be confused with other problems such as anal fissures.

I've never given much thought to hemorrhoids until a friend of mine got them after giving birth and asked me for help. She was very uncomfortable, so I suggested she make some herbal suppositories.

The recipes for suppositories can vary greatly, we just worked with what she and I had on hand.

1 cup of coconut oil
2 T powdered calendula buds
2 T powdered plantain leaf
2 T powdered comfrey leaf
2 T powdered yarrow leaf and flower
(I am guessing on herb amounts as small handfuls were ground and added in.)

Melt the coconut oil over medium heat - once it has liquefied add the powdered herbs and stir well. Remove from heat. As it begins to firm up keep stirring the oil so that the herbs are mixed in well. It should be a nice green color. Once the oil is mostly firm, use clean hands to form the green goop into smooth tampon shaped suppositories. Keep them stored in the freezer until ready to use.

To insert, just before going to sleep at night, lie on your side, find the right the opening for your anus and then insert gently. Your symptoms should clear up within a few days, but keep using the suppositories for a few days after that. If symptoms do not go away after several days, seek a holistically minded medical professional.

Instead of a suppository you can also do an herbal sitz bath with the above herbs. You don't want a lot of water in ratio to herbs, so a small amount of water with the herbs in a small tub should suffice. Let your booty rest in there for twenty minutes, twice a day until symptoms have gone away.

I chose the above herbs because they were what we had on hand. A variety of different herbs could be used. If you know your plant properties you can easily substitute different herbs. I was looking for soothing, demulcent herbs, vulnary herbs, astringent herbs, antiseptic herbs and anti-inflammatory herbs. Off the top of my head other herbs that could be used are slippery elm (demulcent), rose (anti-inflammatory and astringent), Geranium (antiseptic and astringent), etc.

Hemorrhoids can be caused by too much straining or bearing down (i.e. constipation or birth), sitting for too long, tight muscles or vigorous anal or vaginal sex. You probably know which one of these caused yours and you may want to take preventive care in the future.

If you frequently have swollen hemorrhoids changing your diet and increasing aerobic exercise might be appropriate. You may also find this blog post by Henriette to be helpful.