Doctors usually don’t recommend any treatment for people with piles as many people get better on their own. However, sometimes an ointment for piles is recommended to alleviate the symptoms of this condition. Such piles creams numb the affected area and reduce swelling to lower the discomfort. People with piles can expedite their recovery and avoid getting surgical procedures for piles by proactively treating this condition with ointments recommended by a doctor.
Here, you can find different piles medicine including ointments and topical creams and some other ways to treat piles. Let’s start with the overview of the condition and understand different types of piles.
What are piles?
Piles are a common condition that affect many individuals worldwide irrespective of their gender. People with piles get haemorrhoids in and around their rectum that sometimes bleed and lead to irritation and pain. Piles are caused because of excessive pressure to the blood vessels in the anal region that can increase due to different causes.
Based on where the haemorrhoids occur, piles are categorised into two types—internal and external haemorrhoids. Internal haemorrhoids occur inside the rectum and may prolapse (falls out of the rectum) and need to be manually pushed back inside, whereas external haemorrhoid occur near the anus and can cause quite discomfort to a person in basis activities such as sitting and going about their day.
Symptoms of piles
Although piles are characterised by bleeding during or after bowel movements, one needs to consult a doctor to confirm the condition. Piles symptoms often resemble those of colon cancer or anal fissures. Here is a list of common symptoms of piles apart from bleeding:
- Itching, pain, irritation in the anal region
- Swollen lumps in the anal region that are sometimes hard to touch
- Mucus on the underwear near the anal region
Please note that haemorrhoids that are hard to touch, called thromboses haemorrhoids, usually have a blood clot inside causing the hardness; they need to be drained by a doctor to avoid severe pain.
How common is piles? Who is prone to get piles?
Piles is a common condition, and most people have it at some point in their lives. Piles can go unnoticed if it doesn’t cause significant symptoms as it might heal on its own. But one should always be vigilant about any symptoms the body shows and consult the doctor in case of confusion to prevent piles from progressing further.
The following are some of the factors that increase the risk of a person getting piles:
- Chronic/prolonged constipation or diarrhoea
- Excessive straining during bowel movements
- Sitting on the toilet for too long
- Lifting heavy objects
- Family history of piles
- Caesarean delivery (episiotomy)
- Anal intercourse
- Inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease
- Surgeries related to the rectum and/or anal canal
- Old age
Ointments for piles (haemorrhoids)
A topical cream or an ointment can work really well in treating haemorrhoids that do not require any surgery or other treatment options. Listed below are some of the most common ointments for haemorrhoids that are easily available over the counter.
- Shield rectal ointment
This is a common haemorrhoid medication that contains active ingredients like allantoin, lidocaine, zinc oxide, and hydrocortisone. Some of the common side-effects of the shield rectal ointment are dizziness, redness of the skin, and visual problems.
- Recticare anorectal cream
This ointment works well in relieving symptoms of itching, inflammation, pain, and burning sensation. It, contains lidocaine, is also useful in treating other anorectal diseases in their initial stages and relieve pain. Irritation on skin is a common side effect of this cream.
- Anovate cream
With active ingredients like phenylephrine, beclometasone, lidocaine, this cream can help with different symptoms including itching, pain, swelling, and discomfort. Patients may experience some burning, itching, and redness on the application site.
- Anusol hemorrhoidal ointment
This cream provides quick relief from pain and can be applied to both internal and external haemorrhoids. This ointment has ingredients such as zinc oxide, bismuth oxide, and balsam peru. However, there are some side-effects of this cream including burning, itching, or redness of the skin.
- Tronolane haemorrhoid cream
This is also one of the common piles cure creams that gives instant relief from pain. One of the benefits of this ointment is that its odour is not pungent or irritating.
- Equate haemorrhoid cream
This cream is meant to ease inflammation and irritation in the anal region. Equate haemorrhoid cream can shrink haemorrhoids and cure piles while simultaneously giving instant relief.
Alternative treatment options for piles
There are several ways of treating haemorrhoids in their early stages including home remedies, medications, and non-surgical treatments apart from ointments for haemorrhoids.
- Sitz bath
Sitting in a warm bath might help relax the anal region and soothe the symptoms of inflammation.
- Ice packs
Applying cold compresses to the affected area can alleviate pain.
Tablets for piles such as ibuprofen help block pain, but if you need to take them often (daily), you should visit a doctor and get yourself checked.
Rubber band litigation
Doctor’s use a tube-like instrument to tie a rubber band at the base of the haemorrhoid (usually internal ones). This stops the blood flow to the haemorrhoids, and it eventually shrinks and falls off.
This procedure involves injecting a special liquid inside the haemorrhoid, which creates a scar and cuts off blood supply to the haemorrhoid.
Laser treatment for piles
Similar to sclerotherapy, the tissue of the haemorrhoid is scared using laser and cut off blood supply.
When the haemorrhoid becomes too large and risks causing considerable complications, the doctors might suggest this procedure. In a haemorrhoidectomy, the doctor’s cut large haemorrhoids and remove them from the person’s anal region; the person is usually under the effects of local anaesthesia.
Health tips for piles
Here are some tips to help manage the condition:
- Eat a fibre-rich diet
Eating enough fibre helps in making bowel movements easy. You should consider adding fibre supplements if you cannot eat fruits and other fibre-rich foods due to any medical reason. Please note that this should be done in moderation as an excess of fibre intake can lead to constipation.
- Exercise regularly
Indulging in basic physical activity, including walking, bicycling, and swimming, can help in preventing this condition from getting worse. Specially Kegel exercises (focusing on strengthening your pelvic muscles) are recommended by doctors.
- Maintain a healthy weight as per the standard BMI
Being overweight can put extra pressure on some organs such as blood vessels in the rectum. By maintaining a healthy weight, one may prevent getting more haemorrhoids.
- Regulate bowel movements
Since piles is closely related to the bowel movement, it is important to pay extra attention to this. You should not control strong urges to go to the toilet and avoid sitting on the toilet for too long; remember you can always return to the washroom.
Additionally, if you see blood on your underwear during the day as well, you should consult a doctor to examine your condition. After consulting the doctor, you can use small sanitary napkins (called panty liners) or diapers to avoid embarrassment while you are out.
Ointments for piles/haemorrhoids are extremely beneficial in relieving the troubling symptoms so that people can go on with their lives. However, it is important to contact a doctor first to avoid any complications later on instead of grabbing the OTC ointments. In addition, you can take measures to prevent the condition from developing again after you heal. Please note that you should visit the doctor if you see your symptoms worsening with time as it could indicate a more severe problem such as colon cancer.