Hemorrhoids During Pregnancy

Hemorrhoids are swollen veins in your rectum that can cause itching, burning, pain, or bleeding. It's common to get them during pregnancy, especially in the third trimester. You should call your doctor if yours bleed or hurt a lot.

You're more likely to get hemorrhoids if you're constipated, because straining to have a bowel movement swells your veins. Your growing baby also puts pressure on the large veins behind your uterus.

Hemorrhoids usually go away soon after your baby is born.

Ease Pressure

Don't stand or sit for a long time because it puts pressure on the veins in your lower body. If you must sit, get up and move around for a few minutes every hour.

Prevent Constipation

Eat high-fiber foods. Good choices include whole-grain breads and cereals, fruits and vegetables, and beans.

Drink plenty of water. A glass of prune juice may also help.

Exercise 30 minutes most days, with your doctor's OK.

Soothe Irritation

Soak your bottom in a few inches of warm water several times a day to relieve pain.

Apply an ice pack or cold compress for 10 minutes up to four times a day to bring down swelling.

Use unscented, non-alcohol wet wipes if toilet paper is uncomfortable.

Check with your doctor about taking an over-the-counter pain reliever or a stool softener or using a hemorrhoid cream.

WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Laura J. Martin, MD on September 7, 2016

Sources

SOURCES:

American Academy of Family Physicians: "Changes in Your Body During Pregnancy: Third Trimester."

March of Dimes: "Your Pregnant Body: Hemorrhoids."

Nemours Foundation: "Pregnancy Questions & Answers."

Staroselsky, A. Canadian Family Physician, February 2008.

University of Rochester Medical Center: "Managing Hemorrhoids and Varicose Veins in Pregnancy."

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