People who suffer from hemorrhoids often ask this question “do hemorrhoids smell?” This is because they do not notice that from time to time hemorrhoids can cause bad smell. This smell is not typically classified as a symptom of hemorrhoids but it can be a symptom. The smell can be caused by some factors like infection, inability to clean the anal area due to pain and leakage of the anus. Most people may not be aware of this bad smell from the anal area, this means that your hemorrhoid had become inflamed and the smell is the only way your body is letting you know.
WHAT IS HEMORRHOID
Hemorrhoid is swollen blood vessels that are around the anus or inside the rectum. Another name for hemorrhoid is pile and it develops when there is much pressure on the anus. This condition is common that about 1 out of 20 people in America suffer from it, this number increases in people above 50 years that about in 2 in adults have pile (The National Institute of Health, 2016).
There are some factors that can cause this health condition like sitting down for long hours, chronic constipation, straining during bowel movement and family history. Common symptoms of hemorrhoids are bleeding, itching, swelling, pain during bowel movement and irritation around the anal area, anal mucus and leakage.
WHY DO HEMORRHOIDS SMELL
There are some reasons why your hemorrhoids give a bad smell, remember that the bad smell is not typically a symptom of the health condition so there must be reasons. Some of the reasons are:
1. Difficulty Cleaning The Anus
One of the major symptoms of hemorrhoids is pain when sitting or during bowel movement, this can make it difficult to clean the anus after bowel movement. This can leave traces of fecal matter. The residue can cause bad smell.
2. Anal Discharge
Most hemorrhoids that are large and inflamed can produce mucus discharge, this discharge has a very bad smell. The mucus can come out of the anus accidentally when you pass out gas. You can also see the discharge when you clean your anus.
3. Fecal Leakage
In some persons, hemorrhoids may prevent the anus from closing completely especially internal hemorrhoids. Such persons lose control of the muscles that keeps the anal passage closed. This can cause some fecal matter to come out of the anus. This fecal matter is always accompanied with foul odour.
Hemorrhoids can become infected, the infection mostly occur when the internal hemorrhoids bulge out of the anus and are cut our of blood supply. When this happens, they develop pus that produces bad smell.
5. Gangrene Disease
Gangrene disease is a rare condition that causes hemorrhoids to become infected with flesh-eating bacteria, fungi, or viruses. One of the symptoms of this disease is a strong foul smell. Other symptoms are tiredness, high fever, moderate to severe pain and swelling, redness, fast heart rate, brown to purple tissue in the late stage. This disease is deadly as research review stated that about 20 to 40 percent mortality rates for patients.
WHAT DOES A HEMORRHOID ODOR SMELL LIKE
- The smell from hemorrhoids do not have a specific smell, it is not subjective and differ based on the cause of the smell.
- If the order is caused by your inability to clean your anus due to pain, then the smell will be a fecal odor.
- If the smell is caused by the gangrene disease, then the odor will come off as rotten or rank.
- If you have a mucus discharge, the smell will be fishy
- If your hemorrhoids are bulging out of your anus and have been infected, the smell can be foul or putrid.
DO HEMORRHOIDS SMELL FISHY
Hemorrhoids can cause fishy smell to emit from the anal area although there are other reasons. The smell is caused by the discharge from the rectum that is produced by the mucus membrane, the discharge can come out as there is no control of the anal muscles. This smell can be embarrassing especially if other people get to perceive it. However, with good hygiene, you can prevent others from perceiving the fishy smell.
DO HEMORRHOIDS SMELL WHEN THEY BURST
External hemorrhoids are likely to burst open if they developed blood clots. The smell can be a mixture of iron and metallic smell. This is because the clots may have contained blood and mucus. When the clots burst, it is important you take care of yourself to avoid the hemorrhoids becoming inflamed. When they are infected, they will produce bad smell.
HOW TO REDUCE THE ODOR FROM HEMORRHOIDS
Reducing the odor is best to avoid other people from noticing the bad smell and causing you embarrassment. Some of the ways to reduce the bad smell are:
1. See a doctor to check if there are other causes of the bad smell. If there are infections, you should have it treated, the more the infections are in your anal area, the more your body produces bad smell. Clean your anal area with warm water and soap if you experience pain while using tissues and toilet paper. You can also consider using moist wipes, they are gently on the skin.
2. Take warm bath frequently especially after bowel movements, it will help to soothe your hemorrhoids. You can consider using a bidet after bowel movement. Bidet is a shallow toilet that sprays water on the genitals. The water from the toilet is clean and gentle on your skin. You can easily get them online.
3. Apply creams with anti-inflammatory ingredients like witch hazel, zinc, panthenol, or aloe vera. These creams will help to soothe your anus and make cleaning easier and pain-free for you. Treat the hemorrhoids.
MEDICAL TREATMENT FOR HEMORRHOIDS
The best way to avoid having bad smell from hemorrhoids is to treat it, this will save you from the pain, bleeding and irritation. There are some steps that are involved in treating hemorrhoids.
The first step after being diagnosed and certified by a doctor that you have hemorrhoids is to try and manage the symptoms at home using recommendations from your doctor to change your diet. If the home remedies did not help you to manage the symptoms, some medical procedures can be used. These procedures do not involve using anaesthesia because they are outpatient procedures.
You will go home after the process. Some of these clinical procedures are rubber band litigation, laser or infrared coagulation. In worst cases where the hemorrhoids failed to be treated using clinical procedures, the last option is to use surgical methods. One of the most common procedure is excisional hemorrhoidectomy that involves incisions. This procedure will give positive results and also reduce the chances of the hemorrhoids recurring.
HOME REMEDIES FOR HEMORRHOIDS
Home remedies are the first step to managing and relieving the symptoms of hemorrhoids.
- Drinking enough water or consuming fruits with high water content will help to keep the body hydrated and make it easier during bowel movements.
- Eat more foods that have high fiber content. Fiber fights against constipation and also help in digestion. Try to consume at least 25 g for women and 38 g for men. This daily requirement may not be possible as most American foods contain only 16 g of fiber per day.
- Take fiber supplements and stool softener. In cases where the foods you eat daily cannot give you the required fiber your body needs, you can use fiber supplements to add up.
- Over-the-counter creams and suppositories can be used on the anal area to reduce the pain, irritation and itching. These creams are helpful although they will not treat the hemorrhoids.
- Sitz bath is recommended. Soak your genital area in a large bowl of warm water for 20 minutes. You can add essential oils and epsom salt to get extra relief. This bath will help to soothe your irritated anus.
COMPLICATIONS OF UNTREATED HEMORRHOIDS
Leaving hemorrhoids without treating them can cause some complications. Some of them are:
1. Continuous bleeding from the rectum and anus
Much blood will be lost if no treatment is given. This can lead to anemia .
2. Bad Smell
The bad smell from the anal area can continue to emit from the anal area and with time, others may start to notice it as well. This can cause embarrassment.
The muscles around the anus can block blood from being supplied to the internal hemorrhoids that have bulged out of the anal opening.
Hemorrhoids can be trapped when they try to leave the anus. This can cause blood to form.
Hemorrhoids can cause bad smell to emit from the anal area. This smell can be described as fishy, foul, rotten or putrid depending on the cause of the smell. The smell can be caused by discharge or leakage from the anus, infection or pain that makes it difficult to clean the anus after bowel movement. Caring the body is one way to prevent the smell but the best way is to treat the hemorrhoids or manage the symptoms. This way, you will not have to worry about the smell again.