By Frida Mom
HOW TO TREAT THE 'RHOIDS DURING PREGNANCY AND POSTPARTUM
You may have been warned, or this may come as a surprise, but hemorrhoids during pregnancy and postpartum are really common. Super uncomfortable, yes, but you can take comfort in the fact that at least you’re not suffering through them alone.
So what’s the deal with those raging ‘rhoids? And how can you treat them to manage the discomfort? Let’s get to the bottom of it.
WHAT EXACTLY IS A HEMORRHOID?
They’re veins that have become swollen and engorged with blood - varicose veins but in your tush, basically. You can get hemorrhoids at any time during your life, but pregnancy and childbirth do increase the likelihood of developing them, for a few different reasons.
• When you’re pregnant, your body increases its production of a hormone called progesterone, which can cause the veins in your body to relax.
• Then, you have all that added pressure down there, from carrying a growing baby to pushing during delivery.
• Add in constipation from pregnancy and during postpartum recovery, and you’ve got yourself a trifecta of problems in that general area.
WHAT WILL THEY DO TO ME?
Hemorrhoids can cause pain, itching, and general discomfort, and make sitting super unpleasant. If they’re really bad, you might even notice blood in your stool after a bowel movement. In other words, these suckers aren’t something you can just ignore or wish away.
WHEN DO THEY SHOW UP AND WHAT CAN I DO TO PREVENT THEM?
A lot of women develop hemorrhoids during pregnancy, but might not realize they have them until after they deliver, and they’ve either pushed them out or irritated them enough to notice. Your doctor will most likely recommend taking stool softeners in the days leading up to your due date and will definitely have you taking them after your baby is born. Do not pass on the stool softeners, trust us on this. Getting things moving and relieving constipation will help a lot. But, once you have the ‘rhoids, you’re going to want to have the right tools on-hand to treat them at home.
HOW CAN I TREAT THEM AT HOME?
Let’s talk about relieving some of the pain in your butt.
- • Chill ‘em. The best treatment for hemorrhoids is ice, but icing your tush isn’t exactly convenient. Our Instant Ice Maxi Pads make it convenient. These absorbent maxis can be used in place of your regular maternity maxi and provide 20 minutes of cold therapy on your perineum, vag to tush.
- • Foam ‘em. For added relief, pump some Witch Hazel Perineal Healing Foam on the pad and let the healing powers of Witch Hazel work their magic (Witch Hazel has been shown to help with pain relief and swelling). And rather than soaking into the pad, the foam sits on top and gets right to the heart of the matter.
- • Soak ‘em. Another way to heal your backside is with regular soaks in a sitz bath with warm, shallow water. Take your sitz bath to the next level with our Sitz Bath Tablets. These pre-measured bath tablets contain Epsom salt and natural herbs that can really speed up your hemorrhoid recovery. In fact, a study conducted in 2018 found that women who took a sitz bath with Epsom salt three times a day had a 100% recovery rate, compared to 85% of women who used topical hemorrhoid creams.
- • Cushion ‘em. While you’re waiting for those veins to calm down, you need a Perineal Cooling Comfort Cushion on which to rest your butt. Yes, you are going to be one of THOSE people who travel with their own seat cushion, but luckily this one is sleek, discreet, and folds up to take on-the-go. The cushion provides comfort in two ways: one side is a padded donut cushion to reduce pressure when you’re sitting down, and the other side has a reusable cold pack insert to provide cold therapy during a hemorrhoid flare-up. This compact and portable seat saver/savior is a must-have during postpartum recovery.