For many years, people have been using Epsom salt for hemorrhoids with very positive results. Today, we’ll show you how to use it so you can benefit from it as well.
Hemorrhoids are a common medical condition. These occur when veins in the anus and rectum swell. While hemorrhoids often heal on their own in a few weeks, they can cause pain, itching, and rectal bleeding in the meantime.
Several home treatments and natural remedies can offer relief, such as taking an Epsom salt bath or applying an Epsom salt paste.
Epsom salt for hemorrhoids: The real deal
Make sure you use real Epsom salt since it’s completely different from the type of salt you probably have in your kitchen. While they look similar, Epsom salt is made from magnesium sulfate. Cooking salt is made from sodium chloride.
While there are not many clinical studies supporting its benefits, Epsom salt has been used for centuries to treat a variety of things, including, but not limited to:
It is likely that these benefits are related to the magnesium content in Epsom salt.
Where to buy Epsom salt?
You can find Epsom salt in most grocery stores and pharmacies. It is also available online.
Epsom salt comes in different grades, depending on its intended use. To ensure you get Epsom salt that is safe for medical use, look for a “drug info” chart on the packaging or check to see if it’s “USP grade.”
How to make an Epsom salt hemorrhoids bath
There are two ways to use an Epsom salt bath for hemorrhoids. You can add salt to the water in your bathtub or use a sitz bath.
A sitz bath is a round, shallow sink that you can find online or at your local pharmacy. Most fit over the edge of your toilet, but you can also place them in your bathtub.
They allow you to soak only your genital and anal areas without taking a full bath.
A regular bathtub works, too. Just be sure to clean it before you use it. Wipe your bathtub with a little white vinegar, followed by spraying some baking soda on the surface. Rub well and rinse.
Epsom salt bath
Fill your bathtub with 4 or 5 inches of lukewarm water. The water should be warm enough to dissolve the salt without scalding it. If you use a sitz bath, add enough warm water so you can soak the area without overflowing the sink.
- Add 2 cups of Epsom salt to the warm water. If you are using a sitz bath, aim for 1/2 cup.
- Lower your anal area into the toilet and soak for 10 to 20 minutes.
- Rinse yourself and the tub. To avoid further irritation, dry the area instead of scrubbing.
You can do this up to three times a day. If possible, try taking an Epsom salt bath after having a bowel movement.
How to make an Epsom Salt Paste for Hemorrhoids
If bathing is not your thing, you can also try to make a paste to apply directly to the affected area.
In addition to Epsom salt, you will also need some vegetable glycerin.
To make and apply an Epsom salt paste, follow these steps:
- In a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoons of vegetable glycerin with another 2 of Epsom salt to form a paste.
- Place the paste on a piece of gauze and apply it directly to the affected area. Hold the pad in place for 15-20 minutes.
- Repeat every four to six hours until the pain subsides.
Know when to seek help
Mild hemorrhoids generally don’t require any medical treatment. But if you have never experienced them before and have rectal bleeding, it is best to see a health care provider for a formal diagnosis.
Also, seek treatment if you begin to experience severe pain. This can be a symptom of a thrombosed hemorrhoid, which occurs when a blood clot forms in the hemorrhoid. Try to get an appointment as soon as possible.
Hemorrhoids with thrombosis are easiest to treat within the first 72 hours.
Finally, if you don’t feel relief after two weeks, it is best to follow up with a health care provider. They may suggest a procedure to remove the hemorrhoids.
Additional home remedies for curing hemorrhoids
Besides Epsom salt, we provide you with these additional remedies that can be easily implemented from home. This only applies if symptoms are mild or if you want to prevent them.
1. Aloe vera
It is one of the easiest remedies available and simple to use to improve symptoms, reduce pain, inflammation, and itching.
An aloe vera stalk should be cut off and applied to the affected area several times a day, especially after bowel movements.
2. Chamomile – Horsetail – Rosemary
If what you need is to reduce inflammation in the anal area and the discomfort of bleeding, these medicinal plants are effective.
Boil a handful of these plants, such as chamomile, horsetail, and rosemary, for about 5 minutes. Once the water is cold, the area should be submerged in it for 10 minutes.
3. Swiss chard
First and foremost, the swiss chard must be washed very well previously and left to cool in the refrigerator to proceed with the application directly on the affected area.
It can be done 3 times a day.
Its properties allow the sensation of burning and inflammation to be diminished. A striped potato is taken and wrapped in a cloth to be placed in the area of discomfort.
5. Essential oils (lavender, mint, cypress)
In this case, the lavender essential oil helps reduce inflammation, mint to reduce itching, and cypress is an intravenous tonic.
A drop of oil of each essence should be dissolved in a spoonful of vinegar, and then it should be added to a glass of water. In case it’s a bigger container, the drops of oils are increased.
This serves to make a sitz bath. You can also put some of the mixtures to a gauze and apply it in the anus area for 10 to 15 minutes 3 times a day.
6. Homemade rosemary cream
Place the rosemary in olive oil and lavender and let it macerate in a glass jar. After it’s displayed in a dark green color, it means it’s ready to be used.
Rosemary aids circulation and the lavender helps as a sedative and anti-inflammatory.
7. Plantain and yarrow
These two plants provide benefits to soothe the skin and decrease bleeding. They can be added to macerated oil or made into a separate oil, then filtered with added beeswax.
8. Shea butter and camphor
Place the shea butter cream and camphor oil in water, make sure it dissolves well. Wait until it solidifies and is ready to be applied in the affected area.
9. Chia seeds
The consumption of chia seeds helps to improve constipation. It can be mixed with yogurt, fruits, or cereals.
You can also mix 2 spoonfuls of chia seeds in a glass of water until it’s covered and left to rest for 2 to 3 hours. A semi-gelatinous liquid will be obtained, which should be taken preferably at fast.
What are hemorrhoids? Summary
Hemorrhoids are venous packages or venous flexes that are found in the anus canals. Their function is to swell to prevent feces from coming in direct contact with the sphincter and injuring it.
We are all born with these packages or lumps; however, the presence of hemorrhoids symptoms is common in adults over 30 years old and the elderly. Still, it is also possible to occur in children and even babies.
For many people, talking about hemorrhoids can become an uncomfortable topic, especially if they are suffering from them, in which case these people often carry these annoying symptoms in silence.
Others have broken taboos and are more open about it.
One of the main symptoms of hemorrhoids is bleeding during bowel movements, especially if these are found internally. When presenting this symptomatology, it must be treated.
It is important to understand that hemorrhoids represent hemorrhoidal pads. These contain spleens that facilitate continence and, at the same time, avoid injury to the sphincter muscle.
The sphincter muscle of the anus can be controlled by opening and closing it at will. Inside the rectum, three pads are located on the left side, the right side, and the posterior right side.
So, hemorrhoids are swollen veins in the anus or lower rectum generated when pressure increases in the anal canal, which can be internal or external.
Why do hemorrhoids occur?
The causes are linked to increased pressure in the canal, which can be generated by the following:
- When sitting for a long time
- Obesity and pregnancy
- Prolonged constipation
- When straining to defecate
- Having a low-fiber diet
- Not consuming enough fruits and vegetables
- Lack of physical activity
- Chronic diarrhea
- Other pathologies
When someone visits the doctor due to this annoying problem, it’s probably because of bleeding and protrusion represented by hard lumps near the anus. These can be visible and palpable as the case may be.
Also, bloody feces are the main characteristic when suffering from hemorrhoids. Other symptoms are minor discomfort and inconvenience when sitting and pain when defecating, in addition to constipation.
Main symptoms will be directly related to the type of hemorrhoid found and its cause:
- Internal hemorrhoids: These are usually asymptomatic; that is, they don’t reflect any symptoms. Even so, bleeding can be perceived at the time of defecation, usually not painful. In this case, they cannot be seen or felt.
- External hemorrhoids: Now these can be seen, there is irritation in the area, itching, they can thrombose, there is bleeding, and you can feel a lot of pain.
To diagnose and make sure that it’s indeed a hemorrhoid problem, the doctor must be assisted and make an area inspection, performing a rectal examination to perceive any lumps.
A test called sigmoidoscopy is also performed to rule out possible polyps or a malignant neoplasm. The specialist doctor is known as a proctologist.
When treating a patient with hemorrhoids, the main thing is to eliminate the internal condition.
Hemorrhoids are treated in various ways according to the degree in which they are found. These can be the following:
- Topical, when some ointment or cream is applied directly to the area
- Use of medications such as pills, which serve to reduce swelling in the veins.
- Change of diet
- Surgical, this will depend on the degree to which the hemorrhoids are found. When constant bleeding occurs, and the person presents symptoms of anemia, also when having a venous thrombosis
The surgery can be done by laser or through the conventional method using dissection. Although the surgery is not definitive, it is possible to suffer from hemorrhoids again if appropriate care is not maintained.
How to prevent hemorrhoids?
The most important thing to look out for is constipation, the reason why you must evaluate your nutritional habits, incorporating the necessary fiber consumption and sufficient water intake (at least 2 liters a day).
People who suffer from hemorrhoids should avoid eating spicy foods and coffee since these can easily irritate the mucous membrane of the area. On the other hand, consuming garlic helps with circulation and treats infections.
Journalists and health experts have published this advice; however, it does not replace an appointment with your doctor.
Epsom salt for hemorrhoids: The bottom line
Hemorrhoids are quite common and tend to resolve on their own. During the healing process, taking Epsom salt baths or applying an Epsom salt paste can relieve the pain.
Just be sure to seek additional treatment if you are in a lot of pain or if your symptoms don’t improve after a couple of weeks.