Why Does it Hurt to Poop?

Why Does it Hurt to Poop?

Though not an easy topic to talk about, pain when you poop isn’t a symptom you should grin and bear. That discomfort you feel is a sign that something else is going on. Though not always a serious health issue, finding out the cause can help stop the anal pain

At Midwest Hemorrhoid Treatment Center in Creve Coeur, Missouri, our board-certified family medicine physician, Dr. Betsy Clemens, specializes in treating hard-to-discuss symptoms like painful bowel movements. 

Why does it hurt to poop? Here, we share with you some of the common causes. 

Constipation or diarrhea

Pooping is an essential function, ridding your body of the waste left over from the food you eat. Ideally, stool is soft, formed, and easy to pass. 

But if you’re dealing with constipation or diarrhea, passing stool may not feel so easy. Constipation causes dry, hard, difficult to pass stool that may cause anal discomfort as it exits your body.

Having a few watery stools in a row may also cause anal pain. When you have diarrhea, food moves quickly through your digestive system, not giving your small intestine enough time to neutralize stomach acid and enzymes, which irritate the anal skin as the stool passes through.

Repeated wiping may also irritate the delicate anal tissue, making it more painful to poop.


External hemorrhoids are a common source of discomfort because they affect the sensitive anal tissue. Constipation and straining during a bowel movement are factors that contribute to the development of these types of swollen blood vessels. 

Though pain level varies, if a blood clot forms in one of these external hemorrhoids — thrombosed hemorrhoids — your pain may go from a 2 to a 10 on the pain scale. And pooping may worsen your pain. 

Anal fissures

If you have severe, sharp pain during a bowel movement and the pain lingers for hours, then you might have an anal fissure, a tear in the anal tissue. 

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

IBD includes two conditions that cause inflammation and ulcerations in the lining of the digestive tract: ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. When IBD affects the rectum, it can cause painful bowel movements. 

Though there are many reasons why it hurts for you to poop, the pain you feel makes you want to avoid the bathroom altogether. Unfortunately, withholding stool makes many of these conditions worse. 

Knowing the cause of your pain can help you get relief and return to your regular bathroom schedule. We can help you get the answers you need. Call our office at 636-228-3136 to schedule an appointment today. 

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