Piles (Haemorrhoids) Myths And Facts
Haemorrhoids (Piles), more commonly known as piles, are inflamed tissues and swollen veins in the lower part of the rectum and anus region. The most common causes of piles are constipation, diarrhoea, lifting heavy weights, and pregnancy. Symptoms of haemorrhoids include pain, inflammation and itchiness in and around the anal opening, and blood spots on stools. A large section of the population is affected with haemorrhoids. However, people often shy away from talking about the condition of haemorrhoids or piles. This often makes them bear the pain and prevents them from seeking help or get treated. No wonder there are numerous misconceptions floating regarding the causes and treatments of piles. No worries! Medical experts at Yashoda Hospital & Research Centre, Nehru Nagar, Ghaziabad are here to help you debunk these myths and educate you on the facts.
Following are the ten popular myths regarding piles vis-a-vis fact check:
Myth 1. Everyone suffers from piles
Fact Check: All of us have veins in our rectums. Haemorrhoids or piles appear when these veins become swollen and inflamed. A large chunk of the population gets affected with this condition at some point in their lives. In other words, it is a common condition that human race suffers from. If you suffer too from this condition, do consult a doctor. Don’t feel shy/hesitant. Seek help and your pain will be eased.
Myth 2. Sitting on either extreme cold or hot surface can lead to piles
Fact Check: Exposure to extreme levels of temperature of a surface when sitting does not result in piles or haemorrhoids. It is rather the prolonged time that one has spent on a sitting position that can lead to this condition. The prevalent sedentary lifestyle puts us more at risk of developing piles or haemorrhoids. Better keep on moving.
Myth 3. Only aged people suffer from this condition
Fact Check: It is not a condition reserved only for the elderly. Both young, as well as old, can be affected by piles or haemorrhoids; age does not determine the haemorrhoid condition. However, aged people are more susceptible to piles as the muscles and tissues in their bodies become weak with age. Moreover, it is important to understand that piles can affect anyone with chronic constipation or diarrhoea which require straining during bowel moments. Pregnant women are also more so at the risk of suffering from piles.
Myth 4. Piles can never be healed as they are recurrent
Fact Check: This is far from the truth. With the number of effective treatments available today, piles are no longer recurrent. Consult a doctor and s/he will advise which treatment will work best for your condition. Laser surgery for piles has been recognised as one of the most effective treatments for haemorrhoids; it will spare you the privacy intrusion without any pain (being minimally invasive as well). Moreover, the success rate of laser piles surgery is 98%. Even though there is a high probability for the piles to recur in case of open surgeries, with laser surgery the probability of recurrence is reduced to a bare minimum. Getting the right treatment and making necessary lifestyle changes such as managing one’s diet along with exercising regularly will put an end to the niggling discomfort of piles.
Myth 5. Haemorrhoids or piles are cancerous
Fact Check: There is no such study or evidence that suggests that haemorrhoids or piles can be cancerous. However, one must be aware and consult a doctor right away in case there is rectal bleeding since it is a common symptom shared between colon cancer and haemorrhoids.
Myth 6: Eating high fibre foods can help prevent the risk of haemorrhoids
Fact Check: It is true that eating a healthy diet or fibrous foods is definitely good for your overall health and digestive system. However, just controlling your diet is not enough if you want to avoid the risk of developing haemorrhoids. Here, toilet etiquettes also play a crucial part in the development of piles. Therefore, you must exercise regularly and avoid sitting for a prolonged period of time in order to prevent haemorrhoids or piles.
Myth 7. You should avoid exercise if you have piles
Fact Check: Exercising regularly is good for your overall body health. It can help prevent haemorrhoids as well. However, you must avoid exercises such as heavy weight lifting that pressurise the rectal veins, increasing the risk of piles. Other regular exercises such as yoga, swimming and walking are all good for haemorrhoids. These light exercises help keep the bowel movement regular and prevent constipation without straining.
Myth 8: Excessive cycling can lead to piles
Fact Check: This is a widely held misconception by people where they think that sitting on the sturdy seat of a bicycle for long can lead to haemorrhoids or piles. In reality, cycling is good for piles as it helps relax our pelvic floor muscles.
Myth 9: Piles is always associated with bleeding
Fact Check: Bleeding is often associated with haemorrhoids as it is one of the symptoms. But it is not a necessary condition as piles may sometimes not show bleeding symptoms. Piles can be found inside or outside of the anus. Depending on the location of the piles, there are two types of piles; internal and external piles. In external piles, there may be swelling around the anus. In internal piles, no bump can initially be felt and there is itchiness in the anal region along with mucus discharge.
Myth 10: Only males get affected by haemorrhoids
Fact Check: Haemorrhoids is not reserved for men only. Both men and women are equally susceptible to haemorrhoids. Anyone with chronic constipation, diarrhoea, sedentary lifestyle is exposed to the risk of developing haemorrhoids or piles.
To conclude here, medical experts at Yashoda Hospital & Research Centre, Nehru Nagar, Ghaziabad fully understand that being affected with piles is both physically as well as emotionally straining for patients. As a part of our patient awareness programme, we help you understand your condition better first by dispelling the myths surrounding haemorrhoids. You can also visit Yashoda Hospital & Research Centre to know more about piles, its various treatments as well as surgery options. Likewise, you can also opt for online consultation with our piles’ experts here.