Woman holding a bowl of warm water for sitz bath, a common treatment for external hemorrhoids.

How to Get Rid of External Hemorrhoids Without Surgery

Dealing with external hemorrhoids can be a painful and uncomfortable experience. Many people seek relief from this condition without resorting to surgery, which is a more invasive option. In this article, we will explore various natural remedies, lifestyle changes, and medical treatments that can help you get rid of external hemorrhoids without the need for surgery.

Understanding External Hemorrhoids

External hemorrhoids are swollen blood vessels located under the skin around the anus. They may make you feel uncomfortable, hurt, itch, or bleed.. It’s essential to understand the causes and symptoms of external hemorrhoids to effectively address the issue.

Symptoms of External Hemorrhoids

External hemorrhoids are typically accompanied by several noticeable symptoms, which may vary in severity from person to person. These symptoms can include:

  1. Pain and Discomfort: External hemorrhoids can cause pain and discomfort in the anal area, particularly during bowel movements. The pain may range from mild to severe, depending on the size and condition of the hemorrhoid.
  2. Itching and Irritation: Itching around the anus is a common symptom of external hemorrhoids. The area may also become irritated and sensitive due to the constant itching and rubbing.
  3. Swelling and Inflammation: External hemorrhoids often appear as swollen lumps or bulges around the anus. The swelling and inflammation can cause discomfort and make it difficult to sit or move comfortably.
  4. Bleeding: Hemorrhoids can cause bleeding during or after bowel movements. The blood may be bright red and seen on toilet paper or in the toilet bowl. While bleeding is usually not severe, it can be alarming and may require medical attention if it persists or is accompanied by other concerning symptoms.

Causes of External Hemorrhoids

External hemorrhoids develop when the blood vessels around the anus and lower rectum become swollen and inflamed. The exact cause of this condition is not always clear, but several factors can contribute to its development, including:

  1. Straining during Bowel Movements: Chronic constipation or excessive straining during bowel movements can put pressure on the veins in the anal area, leading to the formation of hemorrhoids.
  2. Pregnancy: The increased pressure on the pelvic area during pregnancy can cause the development of hemorrhoids. Hormonal changes and the added weight of the growing uterus can also contribute to this condition.
  3. Obesity: Being overweight or obese puts extra pressure on the veins in the lower rectum and anus, increasing the risk of developing hemorrhoids.
  4. Sedentary Lifestyle: Prolonged sitting or a lack of physical activity can contribute to the development of hemorrhoids. Regular exercise helps promote healthy bowel movements and prevents constipation.
  5. Chronic Diarrhea: Frequent episodes of diarrhea can irritate the anal area and contribute to the development of hemorrhoids.
    Aging: The tissues supporting the veins in the anal area may weaken with age, increasing the risk of hemorrhoids.
    Genetics: Some individuals may have a genetic predisposition to develop hemorrhoids, making them more prone to this condition.

Prevention of external hemorrhoids

Preventing external hemorrhoids is crucial for maintaining optimal anal health and avoiding the discomfort they can bring. By incorporating preventive measures into your lifestyle, you can reduce the risk of developing hemorrhoids. Several effective preventive measures are listed below:

  1. Exercise Regularly: Engaging in regular physical activity can promote healthy bowel movements and prevent constipation. Exercise helps stimulate the intestinal muscles, facilitating proper digestion and reducing the strain on the anal area.
  2. Avoid Straining: Straining during bowel movements puts unnecessary pressure on the veins in the anal area, increasing the risk of hemorrhoids. To avoid straining, take your time in the bathroom, and allow the stool to pass naturally. If needed, try using a footstool to elevate your feet, which can help align the rectum for easier elimination.
  3. Practice Good Bathroom Habits: Maintaining good bathroom habits can help prevent hemorrhoids. Avoid prolonged sitting on the toilet, as this can put unnecessary pressure on the anal area. Also, avoid excessive wiping, which can irritate the skin. Instead, gently pat the area with soft, fragrance-free toilet paper or use moistened wipes.
  4. Manage Weight: Maintaining a healthy weight can reduce the strain on your lower rectum and anus. Incorporate a balanced diet and regular exercise into your routine to manage your weight effectively.
  5. Take Breaks from Sitting: Prolonged sitting can contribute to the development of hemorrhoids. If you have a sedentary job or lifestyle, make a conscious effort to take regular breaks and engage in light physical activity, such as walking or stretching.
  6. Practice Good Hygiene: Maintaining proper hygiene in the anal area is essential for preventing infection and minimizing discomfort. After bowel movements, clean the area gently with fragrance-free and alcohol-free wipes or plain water. Avoid using harsh soaps or wipes with added fragrances, as they can irritate the skin.
  7. Address Digestive Issues Promptly: If you frequently experience digestive issues such as chronic constipation or diarrhea, consult with a healthcare professional. They can help identify and address the underlying causes and provide guidance on managing these conditions effectively.

Home Remedies for External Hemorrhoids

  • Sitz Baths: Soaking the affected area in warm water several times a day can help relieve pain and inflammation.
  • Cold Compresses: Applying cold compresses or ice packs to the hemorrhoids can numb the area and reduce swelling.
  • Witch Hazel: Applying witch hazel, a natural astringent, with a cotton pad can provide relief from itching and irritation.
  • Aloe Vera: The cooling properties of aloe vera gel can soothe the inflamed hemorrhoids and promote healing.
  • Essential Oils: Certain essential oils like tea tree oil or lavender oil, when diluted, can be applied topically to reduce pain and inflammation.
  • Over-the-Counter (OTC) Creams and Ointments: OTC hemorrhoid creams containing hydrocortisone or witch hazel can alleviate symptoms temporarily.

Dietary Changes for Hemorrhoid Relief

  • High-Fiber Diet: Consuming fiber-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes can soften the stool, making it easier to pass and reducing strain during bowel movements.
  • Increased Water Intake: Staying hydrated by drinking an adequate amount of water throughout the day can prevent constipation and promote regular bowel movements.
  • Avoiding Trigger Foods: Spicy foods, caffeine, alcohol, and processed foods can irritate the digestive system, worsening hemorrhoid symptoms. It’s best to avoid or limit their consumption.
  • Probiotics: Adding probiotic-rich foods like yogurt or taking probiotic supplements can improve gut health and prevent constipation.
  • Herbal Supplements: Certain herbal supplements like horse chestnut or butcher’s broom may help strengthen blood vessels and reduce hemorrhoid symptoms.

Proper Hygiene Practices

Maintaining proper hygiene is crucial for managing external hemorrhoids and preventing infection.

  • Gentle Cleansing: After bowel movements, clean the anal area gently with fragrance-free and alcohol-free wipes or plain water to avoid irritation.
  • Avoiding Excessive Wiping: Excessive wiping can further irritate the hemorrhoids. Instead, gently pat the area dry or use a soft cloth.

Medical Treatments for External Hemorrhoids

In some cases, medical interventions may be necessary to treat external hemorrhoids. Here are a few options:

  • Rubber Band Ligation: A procedure in which a rubber band is placed around the hemorrhoid, cutting off its blood supply, causing it to wither and fall off.
  • Sclerotherapy: Injection of a chemical solution into the hemorrhoid to shrink and harden it.
  • Infrared Coagulation: The use of infrared light to coagulate the blood vessels, causing the hemorrhoid to shrink.
  • Hemorrhoidal Artery Ligation: The blood supply to the hemorrhoid is blocked, causing it to shrink and eventually fall off.
  • Laser Treatment: A laser is used to vaporize or remove the hemorrhoid.

Lifestyle Tips for Hemorrhoid Management

  • Avoiding Prolonged Sitting or Standing: Sitting or standing for long periods can increase pressure on the anal area, exacerbating hemorrhoid symptoms. Taking breaks and moving around regularly is recommended.
  • Regular Bowel Movements: Establishing a regular bowel movement routine can prevent constipation and reduce strain on the hemorrhoids.
  • Weight Management: Maintaining a healthy weight can alleviate pressure on the lower rectum and reduce the risk of developing hemorrhoids.
  • Stress Reduction: Stress can contribute to digestive problems and worsen hemorrhoid symptoms. Exercises that promote relaxation, like yoga or meditation, can assist in controlling stress.


Dealing with external hemorrhoids can be a distressing experience, but there are effective ways to manage and alleviate the symptoms without resorting to surgery. By implementing natural remedies, making dietary and lifestyle changes, and seeking medical advice, when necessary, you can find relief and improve your quality of life.

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