Researchers cannot come up with sure-fire reasons for hemorrhoid causes. What physicians do know is that internal hemorrhoids are located above the anal sphincter while external hemorrhoids develop just outside the anal canal. However, you may gain some additional insights through this article which discusses several of the theories about the causes of hemorrhoids as well as the accompanying pics.
Possible Hemorrhoid Causes
Hemorrhoid causes could be attributed to a family history of “weak” veins that encourage the development of hemorrhoids and other varicose veins.
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Two other possible hemorrhoid causes share a tight link – diet and straining on the toilet due to constipation. An unhealthy diet comprised of processed foods, combined with too little fiber consumption, causes constipation. Straining to pass a stool is the result of the body not having enough fiber to produce regular, soft stools. Straining leads to increased pressure on the rectum and anus, distending the veins in those areas. Like swollen legs which can lead to varicose veins, one of the causes of hemorrhoids might be the pressure that expands veins. Internal hemorrhoids may form in fissures caused by hard stools that scrape the inside walls of the rectum.
To back up hemorrhoid causes theory of poor diet, research has shown that hemorrhoids are rare in less-developed African countries where their diet contains high levels of fiber and foods that encourage more regular bowel movements. It is believed that, as other countries around the world have added more Western-style foods, including the growing popularity of fast-food restaurants, to their diet, the number of hemorrhoid cases has increased.
Activities as Hemorrhoid Causes
You may also want to consider some of your activities as hemorrhoid causes according to different research theories:
Toilet time. Today’s modern toilet has gotten so comfortable that people may be sitting on the “throne” too long and even read. This type of activity can lead to unnecessary straining as well as too much pressure on the anal veins.
Long Periods in the same position. Any other activities that involve long periods of sitting or standing – from long car trips and plane flights to sedentary jobs – can be added to the list of causes of hemorrhoids. What happens is that long periods in the same position cause the blood above the rectum to put more pressure on the rectum and anus.
Anal sex. Some doctors believe that causes of hemorrhoids can include manipulation of or pressure on the rectum or anus due to both heterosexual and homosexual anal sex. Recent studies have suggested that homosexual men have developed more hemorrhoids than heterosexual males.
Pregnancy is one of few hemorrhoid causes that can be confirmed. Enlargement of hemorrhoids is a temporary condition during pregnancy that can be attributed to a change in body weight, a greater likelihood of sedentary activity, and pressure on the rectum and anus caused by the baby and uterus.
Other activity-related hemorrhoid causes. Researchers have pinpointed other culprits, including diarrhea, excessive use of laxatives and enemas, and heavy lifting.
Physiological Hemorrhoid Causes
Other researchers have focused on any physiological factors that may be causes of hemorrhoids. Here are some of the possibilities to consider:
Pelvic tumors can press on veins that travel upward from the anal canal, leading to the enlargement of hemorrhoids.
Tissue damage or anal canal muscle deterioration due to age or another medical condition can cause the area to no longer properly support hemorrhoids. At this point, the hemorrhoidal tissue can travel down into the anal canal.
Many researchers are studying the relevance of elevated pressure in the anal sphincter as a possible cause of hemorrhoids. The anal sphincter is the muscle that surrounds both the anal canal and the hemorrhoids as well as controls bowel movements. What researchers have yet to figure out is whether the elevated pressure comes before the development of enlarged hemorrhoids or if it is the result of the hemorrhoids.
One theory states that the increased force that may be needed to pass a stool through a tight sphincter may stretch the tissues further and dilate the veins until they become so thin that they bleed. If this same process of stretching and pressure continues for any length of time, the weakened veins can begin to protrude and become one of many possible hemorrhoid causes. If hemorrhoids already exist, then the additional pressure just pulls them farther down and further enlarges them.
More Hemorrhoid Causes Research
However, none of these theories offer concrete evidence that these are the causes of hemorrhoids. There may even be some of you out there that have read and discounted all the aforementioned causes and still have hemorrhoids. Research in this area is ongoing and we will update our articles as more information becomes available to help you.