When it hurts during a bowel movement, you may avoid the bathroom. But ignoring your pain and the need to go can make things worse. In most cases, the cause of the pain has an easy treatment.
At Midwest Hemorrhoid Treatment Center in Town and Country, Missouri, our board-certified family medicine physician, Dr. Betsy Clemens, is an expert at diagnosing and treating conditions that cause anal pain.
In this month’s blog, we want to talk to you about common causes of painful poops and what you can do about it.
About your pain
It’s not unusual to have some discomfort every once in a while during a bowel movement. But if your pain persists or worsens, your pain is a symptom of something else.
The type of pain you feel depends on the cause but may range from a mild ache to sharp pain that lasts hours after your bowel movement. For some, the pain is so bad they avoid going to the bathroom altogether.
Avoiding the bathroom may make things worse, causing your stool to become very dry and hard and more difficult to pass.
Causes of painful bowel movements
Many conditions may cause painful bowel movements. Most aren’t serious health issues, however. Conditions that may be behind your pain include:
- Anal fissures
- Skin infections
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Anal cancer
It’s crucial to know the cause of your pain so you can get the right treatment.
Getting relief from your pain
You can manage some conditions that cause pain during a bowel movement at home, like hemorrhoids, constipation, and short-term diarrhea. However, if your pain fails to improve within a week of at-home care, your pain is severe, or you have blood in your stool, it’s time to come in for an evaluation.
We can quickly determine the cause of your pain and the treatments that can get you relief. For conditions like hemorrhoids and anal fissures, we recommend soaking your bottom in a warm tub of water (sitz bath) for 15 minutes a few times a day. Adding fiber to your diet and drinking plenty of fluids also helps soften stools and reduce some of your pain during a bowel movement.
If you have a thrombosed hemorrhoid (blood clot in external hemorrhoid), we may perform an external thrombectomy at the office to quickly reduce your discomfort. For more serious conditions, like IBD and anal cancer, we refer you to specialists.
Pain every time you have a bowel movement is a symptom of an underlying condition. Knowing what’s causing your pain determines what treatment you need to alleviate it. Call our office at 636-228-3136 to schedule an appointment today.