Causes of piles during pregnancy

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Piles may itch, ache, feel sore, bleed a little and make going to the toilet a pain. There are a number of reasons why pregnancy piles affect mums-to-be:

  • Hormones make your veins relax. Unfortunately that means that the delicate veins around your bottom may get sluggish and swollen too, especially when your ever-growing uterus is putting extra pressure on them.
  • Straining to go to the loo could be a cause, so, if like many mums-to-be, you’re constipated, eating an extra fibrous diet and drinking lots of water should help your haemorrhoids.


Medication for haemorrhoids

Unfortunately, there's only a limited selection of medication you can take for piles during pregnancy, so ask your midwife which piles cream, ointment or suppository you could use.

Other piles treatments

Piles medication isn’t the only answer – here are a few other things you can try to speed up your recovery:

  • Ease the pressure on your abdomen by lying on your left side every few hours if you can. About 20 minutes of putting your feet up should do the trick.
  • Avoid perfumed soaps, talcs or wet wipes. Wash your bottom with plain water on toilet paper after each bowel movement and dry yourself well. Loose fitting cotton underwear will help you feel fresh.
  • Soak a cloth in iced water, wring it out and hold it gently against the piles.
  • If the piles stick out, push them gently back inside using a lubricating jelly.
  • Pat the area, rather than rubbing it.
  • Go to the loo whenever you feel the urge – don't put it off!
  • Avoid straining whilst constipated.
  • Try a little gentle exercise to improve your general circulation.
  • Avoid too much sitting or standing and relax in a warm bath if you're troubled by itching. If that doesn't suit you, some people recommend an ice pack instead.
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