Hemorrhoids are not a serious condition but they can be very painful if left untreated for a couple of weeks. This condition is common in adults. In fact, approximately 75 percent of adults experience hemorrhoids before the age of 50.
As an adult, you may tolerate the pain and swelling but what if your children are the ones suffering from it? Although hemorrhoids occur in children less frequently than in adults, they should still be remedied with attention.
We’re going to focus here on what to do if your child has hemorrhoids. We’ll look at the symptoms, causes, treatment, and potentially more serious conditions of hemorrhoids so that you’re better equipped to get your child the help they need.
Symptoms of hemorrhoids in children
The common symptoms of hemorrhoids in children include the feeling of fullness even after bowel movement, incapacity to defecate bowel, and bloody stools. The symptoms are same as adult hemorrhoids but they can be scary and painful for the little children.
Common causes of infant hemorrhoids
The most common cause of hemorrhoids experienced by children is constipation. This happens when children don’t drink enough liquid to soften stools and voluntarily or involuntarily hold their poop. Holding poop leads to stretching of veins that press against the bladder and inflame the nerves.
Children hold their poop for a variety of reasons: anxiety over toilet training, playtime, fear of using public bathrooms, and fear of painful bowel movement.
Can hemorrhoids in children be a serious condition?
Although hemorrhoids in children resolve quickly, sometimes they may indicate a more serious condition. If you think that hemorrhoids have struck your child, take them to a doctor.
Is it hemorrhoids or is it something serious?
On rare occasions, hemorrhoids in children point towards a more serious health condition. By consulting a doctor, you can know if your kid’s hemorrhoids can lead to the following more serious conditions:
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
The symptoms of IBS include changing bowel habits, bloating, and recurrent stomach ache. In the United States, it is the most common gastrointestinal diagnosis and is usually first manifested in childhood.
Juvenile polyps syndrome
Juvenile polyps syndrome is a serious condition that leads to diarrhea, bleeding, anemia, and abdominal cramps caused by the growth of polyps in the small intestine, large intestine, and stomach. The juvenile polyps grow on the intestine lining which is common in small children.
Pediatric ulcerative colitis
Pediatric ulcerative colitis is the inflammation of large intestine or rectum and is characterized by bloody diarrhea, stomach pain, and tension during bowel movements.
More than 1.4 millions of Americans are affected by Crohn’s disease. Crohn’s disease is a chronic disease that causes swelling across the digestive tract’s lining. The symptoms are fever, blood in the stool, weight loss, eye irritations, joint and skin irritation, abdominal pain, and frequent diarrhea.
How to treat hemorrhoids in children?
More frequently than not, the lack of fiber and dehydration are the main causes of constipation that leads to hemorrhoids. To treat hemorrhoids in children, start by adding more fiber in their diet. Give them the recommended daily serving according to the guide “age plus five grams of fiber.”
Children aged 6 should be given 11 grams of fiber everyday (6 years old + 5 grams = 11). At the same time, children should drink at least 8 glasses of water or any other liquid with low sugar content on a daily basis. You can get fibers from cereals, leafy vegetables, fruits, and whole grain breads.
Moreover, tell your kids to go to the bathroom as soon as they feel the need to poop. Delaying bowel movement worsens hemorrhoids.
In order to provide them relief from the discomfort, give them warm baths or place a cold compress on the affected area and make sure that this area is always clean and dry. Ask them to wipe the area with plain, unscented baby wipes or wet toilet paper especially after bowel movement.
They can also find relief with the help of warm water. Help your kid soak his/her anal area in warm water for 10 to 15 minutes, two to three times a day.
After that, dry this area with hair dryer. Furthermore, a cozy and warm hug also relieves their pain.
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As parents, we always want the best for our kids and do not want them to get hurt. Hemorrhoids in children can be a painful condition because of their young and sensitive nerve endings. It is always important to keep an open communication with your children to know how they feel.
Hemorrhoids can be treated with simple home remedies as well as increased fiber and liquid intake. If the condition lasts for more than two weeks, it is time to consult a doctor.