During pregnancy many women experience Piles also known as Hemorrhoids. While anyone can get piles when you're pregnant, the hormone progesterone, which relaxes the walls of your blood vessels makes piles a lot more likely to occur.
National Health Service, Uk, defines Piles as enlarged and swollen veins in or around the lower rectum and anus. Piles may itch, ache or feel sore. You can usually feel the lumpiness of piles around your anus. They may also bleed a little and can make going to the toilet uncomfortable or painful.
You may also notice pain when passing faeces and a discharge of mucus afterwards. Sometimes, you may feel as though your bowels are still full and need emptying.
According to Bounty, the weight of your growing baby puts more pressure on your veins thereby increasing the likelihood of suffering from piles during pregnancy. Constipation which is also a common occurrence during pregnancy increases the chance of piles.
As reported by Baby Centre, Piles are very common in pregnancy, whether you had them before you were pregnant, or if pregnancy is your first experience of them. Piles probably affects about one in 10 women in their third trimester.
You may also develop piles during labor, during the stage when you push out your baby. Or they may be a result of constipation in the weeks after giving birth, when your body is shedding the extra fluid needed during pregnancy, and is making breastmilk for your baby.
National Health Service, Uk advises that you can ease piles and prevent them, by making some changes to your diet and lifestyle, such as:
- eating plenty of food that is high in fibre, like wholemeal bread and fruit and vegetables, and drinking plenty of water can help to prevent constipation, which can make piles worse
- avoiding standing for long periods
- taking regular exercise to improve your circulation
- using a cloth wrung out in iced water to ease the pain – hold it gently against the piles
- if the piles stick out, push them gently back inside using a lubricating jelly
- avoiding straining to pass a stool, as this may make your piles worse
- after passing a stool, cleaning your anus with moist toilet paper instead of dry toilet paper
- patting, rather than rubbing, the area
Piles during pregnancy is not harmful to the baby but it is advised that if there is any form of bleeding from your anus you inform your doctor. It is also advised that if the pain is too much to cope with, you should visit your doctor so he/she can prescribe painkillers for you.