You want to feel your best during pregnancy. One way to do that is to prevent hemorrhoids. These painful, swollen veins in and around the anus can cause bleeding, pain, irritation, and itching.

Pregnant women are at risk for developing hemorrhoids for a number of reasons:

  • Hormonal changes

  • Pelvic pressure from a growing uterus

  • Straining during childbirth

  • Constipation

Healthy Habits Help Prevent Hemorrhoids

To keep hemorrhoids away, eat a high-fiber diet that includes fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and beans. Also:

  • Drink plenty of water.

  • Follow your doctor’s exercise advice.

  • Avoid straining when having a bowel movement.

Many Ways to Get Relief

If you do develop hemorrhoids, take comfort knowing that they often respond very well to self-care strategies. Here are ways to ease the discomfort:

  • Take warm baths in plain water for about 10 minutes.

  • Use ice packs to reduce swelling.

  • Wipe the area with witch hazel or petroleum jelly.

Over-the-counter counter stool softeners, hemorrhoid creams, or suppositories may provide relief as well. Check with your doctor first before using.

If hemorrhoids continue to bleed, burn, or itch, consult your doctor

Your Guide to Hemorrhoids

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