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As you grow older and you begin to experience some of the effects of aging, it’s easy to feel like you’re all alone, especially when it’s one of the more embarrassing topics to speak about with friends, family, or your doctor, like piles. The fact that it’s a less-than-proper topic of conversation can make finding a remedy for piles a seemingly lonely search.
The truth is that you’re not alone when it comes to piles. According to most medical studies, about 75% of the population over 30 will experience piles at one time in their lives or another, meaning that finding a remedy is fairly simple, if you know where to look.
In addition, with the advent of the information age, it’s fairly easy to anonymously search for information on piles remedies, talk to other people who suffer from piles, or to find a piles specialist in your area via the internet in the privacy of your own home.
With so many people experiencing the effects of piles, it also means that there are a great number of effective remedies available, each with their own benefits depending on how hands-on you are in regards to your own health, your tolerance for discomfort, your ability to take time to recover, and your comfort with seeking professional medical care. Below, we outline some of the remedies for piles, along with notes on why one might choose each.
Creams & Home Remedies
If you’d like to avoid going to the doctor or are looking for a low-cost, private remedy for piles, there are a number of home remedies for piles you can take at home to diminish the symptoms. First, try changing your diet and getting more exercise. Piles are often caused by straining to pass a bowel movement, so adding fiber or a fiber supplement, along with drinking a lot of water throughout the course of the day and adding some exercise to your routine are good ways to combat the constipation that can cause piles. There are also a number of foods with medicinal properties that may assist with diminishing the effects of piles. Consult a naturopathic website or your local organic food/herbs outlet for ideas. In addition, there are a number of over-the-counter creams and medicated pads available at your local drugstore that will assist in giving you relief from your piles. The upside of home remedies is that they’re relatively low cost, but they can be messy and don’t treat the root cause of the piles.
Banding can be a highly effective remedy for piles, and depending on which type you choose, can be virtually painless to somewhat-painful. On the virtually painless end of the scale, the CRH O’Regan System uses a gentle applicator to suction the affected tissue so that a rubber band can be placed around it. In the case of traditional banding, a doctor uses a metal-toothed clamp to pull the affected tissue out so a band can be placed, causing some pain for most patients. Endoscopic banding involves fasting prior and sedation, after which a flexible scope enters the anus and places the band. In all cases, once the band is placed, after a few days the tissue will die and the pile will fall into the toilet, usually unnoticed by the patient. Each ranges from relatively inexpensive, including traditional and CRH, to expensive in the case of endoscopic. Each procedure is relatively short and must be performed by a doctor, with varying recovery times.
Hemorrhoidectomy is a surgical procedure in which a doctor cuts away the effected piles tissue using any number of techniques. Generally reserved for more extreme cases, most doctors will only advise surgery as a remedy for piles when other less-invasive procedures will be insufficient. Most surgical techniques involve either general or local anesthesia, followed by clamping or stapling the affected tissue, the cutting away the tissue, and finally sewing up or burning closed the remaining wound. Generally one of the more painful piles remedies, as previously stated, the procedure requires anesthesia prior, and generally pain medication after, with varying lengths of recovery time—anywhere from a couple days up to a week or more.
IRC, Ultroid Therapy, & Sclerotherapy
Finally, there are several more cutting-edge (and expensive) options to remedy piles. Infrared coagulation (IRC) is only recommended for small or medium piles and involves multiple treatments (with 90-day intervals between) of infrared light used to shrink the pile(s). In addition, IRC is a less-effective treatment, as many patients experience a recurrence of symptoms. Ultroid therapy involves a probe that delivers an electrical current to the pile, setting off a chemical reaction in the tissue, causing it to whither and scar. Though effective, this treatment is only recommended for patients with a high tolerance for pain, as the electrical current used can cause significant discomfort and is quite time consuming. Sclerotherapy is a dated procedure that is rarely used anymore, due to the availability of superior, less painful procedures that require less recovery time. Sclerotherapy involves the injection of chemicals into the pile, causing it to wither and die. Doctors almost never use sclerotherapy anymore, and if your doctor recommends it, you may want to consider a second opinion.
As noted above, there are a wide range of piles remedies available, each offering their own benefits and disadvantages. Fortunately, with the wealth of information available on the Internet, and many experienced piles doctors in every state, finding the right one for you just became a slightly less lonely task.