(HealthDay News) -- Hemorrhoids are painful, swollen veins on the anus or rectum, and may occur from straining to have a bowel movement.
The American Academy of Family Physicians offers these tips to help soothe hemorrhoid pain and discomfort:
- Take a warm bath.
- Use moistened toilet paper or a moist towelette to clean yourself after a bowel movement.
- Apply an ice pack.
- Take an over-the-counter pain reliever.
- Try a topical cream -- when recommended by your doctor. Creams that help numb the area may contain witch hazel, or those that soothe itching may contain hydrocortisone.
- Don't use a hemorrhoid medicine unless you've spoken to your doctor about it first.