- Piles could be prevented by eating more fibre-rich foods
- Straining while passing a stool increases your risk of haemorrhoids
- Exercising regularly and going to the toilet when you feel the urge could lower your risk
- Almost 75 per cent of people experience piles from time to time
Haemorrhoids – also known as piles – are swellings containing inflamed blood vessels, according to the NHS. They’re usually found around or inside the anus.
Symptoms of piles can be difficult to spot, and some people don’t even realise they have them.
But, signs of the condition can include bleeding after passing a stool, having a lump hanging down outside of the anus, or having a mucus discharge after passing a stool.
“Haemorrhoids are very common. Nearly three out of four adults will have haemorrhoids from time to time,” said the Mayo Clinic.
“The best way to prevent haemorrhoids is to keep your stools soft, so they pass easily.”
You could also prevent haemorrhoids by following these four tips.
Eat high-fibre foods
Fibre-rich foods help to keep your stool soft, and increases its bulk.
The best way to add fibre to your diet is by eating more fruit, vegetables and whole grains.
“Add fibre to your diet slowly to avoid problems with gas,” said the Mayo Clinic.
Nuts, beans, jacket potatoes and wholegrain rice are some of the best sources of fibre.
Straining while passing a stool could increase your risk of piles.
“Straining and holding your breath when trying to pass a stool creates greater pressure in the veins in the lower rectum.”
Many cases of haemorrhoids are caused by excessive straining on the toilet, as a result of prolonged constipation.
Drinking plenty of fluids could help to prevent constipation.
Go to the toilet when you need to
You could prevent haemorrhoids by going to the toilet when you need to.
Putting off passing a stool may make the urge temporarily go away.
But, it can make your stool hard and dry, which makes it harder to pass.
The NHS said: “Ignoring the urge to empty your bowels can make your stools harder and drier, which can lead to straining when you do go to the toilet.”
Regular exercise helps to prevent constipation.
It reduces the amount of pressure on your veins, which lowers your chance of haemorrhoids.
“Exercise can also help you lose excess weight that may be contributing to your haemorrhoids,” the Mayo Clinic added.