Hemorrhoids after childbirth and pregnancy

Haemorrhoiden nach Geburt und Schwangerschaft: Frau hält Baby im Arm

As a midwife, I have a lot of experience with hemorrhoids after childbirth and pregnancy (also: through childbirth) and in the postpartum period. Any woman can be affected by hemorrhoids, but pregnancy and childbirth are particular risk factors. In this guide, I will give you tips on how best to avoid hemorrhoids. And if you are affected, what can help and why medical love balls or medical glass dilators are ideal for quick treatment. Because a woman's body and mind are preoccupied with the baby and the (new) family after giving birth, discomfort is particularly troublesome during this phase of life.

Table of contens:

How do hemorrhoids develop after childbirth and pregnancy?


During pregnancy, especially in the first weeks of pregnancy, many changes take place in a woman's body that promote the development of hemorrhoids:

The pregnancy hormones cause a loosening and increased softness of the tissue, which affects the muscles, skin, cartilage and blood vessels. The most striking changes, however, are in the vascular system: the blood volume increases by around 40%, while at the same time the vessels dilate and lose their elasticity. This means that the veins, especially those in the lower half of the body, can no longer transport blood up to the heart as easily and quickly. The venous valves may no longer close completely, causing the blood to pool in the legs. You can counteract these complaints with moderate exercise. In later pregnancy, the veins in the legs and pelvic area are compressed by the weight of the baby and the uterus and the return flow of blood is impeded. This is why pregnant women tend to develop oedema (water retention) and varices (varicose veins). Hemorrhoids are also a form of varicose veins.

The frequently occurring internal hemorrhoids after childbirth (usually grade 1 to grade 2) do not have to cause any symptoms at first and can disappear on their own. The development of haemorrhoids during pregnancy and the postpartum period is also promoted by the hormone-induced reduction in peristalsis (bowel activity) with simultaneous increased fluid absorption in this area. Exercise or even sport is largely absent in the last weeks of pregnancy, so constipation is inevitable. Iron supplementation, which is often prescribed for pregnant women, makes the stool firmer, which also promotes constipation. Constipation, in turn, causes you to push hard during bowel movements. This can lead to the formation of external hemorrhoids (usually grade 2 to grade 4), which must be treated, see picture:

Innere und äußere Hämorrhoiden nach Geburt

Hemorrhoids due to childbirth

Even if haemorrhoids have not yet developed during pregnancy, they can also be caused by the birth itself. Unfortunately, the midwife or doctor usually positions the woman giving birth on her back and asks her to push. It is now a medical fact that both are completely unphysiological and significantly promote the formation of hemorrhoids during childbirth. It would be much better and above all gentler for mother and child if the midwife instructed the baby to "push" out. This makes expulsion easier and significantly reduces the risk of hemorrhoids developing during birth. I teach this technique in my antenatal classes and you can learn it in an individual consultation. Please contact me for more information.

Hemorrhoidal disease in the puerperium

Hemorrhoids in the postpartum period often also have an aggravating effect within the family. In addition to the joy of having a baby and a new family, the early postpartum period (the first ten days after the birth) is often characterized by pain caused by involution and healing: the pelvic floor has been very stressed by the birth and may have suffered injuries. The circulation can be unstable, because the loss of blood and the production of milk means that there is less water or fluid volume in the body, especially if you are replacing iron, so it is good and important to drink plenty of fluids and - also for the whole family - to ensure good and proper nutrition.

This is because constipation, harder stools and the fear of pain when going to the toilet, especially after a perineal tear or episiotomy during childbirth, can be the cause of stool retention. All of this further promotes the existence or development of haemorrhoidal disorders of varying degrees in the postpartum period.

How do I recognize haemorrhoids, varicose veins or anal vein thrombosis?

Various symptoms make it easy to recognize what it is even without a doctor. If in doubt, ask a doctor:

Hemorrhoids are thickenings, swellings or bulges in the anus that feel like foreign bodies and often cause small, harmless bleeding. Hemorrhoids therefore do not have to be painful (at first). The difficulty in cleaning the anus after a bowel movement usually causes itching and/or a burning sensation and inflammation can develop.

Sagging, skin-colored protrusions are usually harmless mariscus. Mariscus can only be reduced by regular massage, which is why our FMS dilators are ideal.

How can I prevent the formation of hemorrhoids?

Women can counteract the physiological factors that promote the formation of hemorrhoids after pregnancy and childbirth with various sensible and helpful behaviors. The following tips alleviate the symptoms and are also good for the baby and the health of the whole family during breastfeeding and the postpartum period.

Proper nutrition:

  • Adequate fluid intake: 2 - 3 liters of water or tea per day
  • Fiber-rich foods such as vegetables, salad, whole grain products, legumes, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, etc.
  • No white flour, better whole grain products.

Correct behavior during bowel movements: not only for constipation:

  • Avoid stress and take time for bowel movements
  • Avoid hectic pressing
  • A posture with raised feet, a rounded back and close to the squat favors bowel movements because the "levator ani" is relaxed, see picture:

Hämorrhoide: Positionen beim Stuhlgang

Proper cleaning of the anus:

  • If necessary, clean dry (but very carefully) before, but in any case damp after
  • Do not use cleansing wipes, as they severely deplete the important flora in the anal area, but preferably washcloths that you only use once
  • It is best to use clear water. If cleansers are used, then only very little and pH-neutral in order to maintain the protective flora in the anal area, followed by nourishing ointments.

Home remedies for hemorrhoids after childbirth and pregnancy

There are also a number of home remedies for hemorrhoids after childbirth and pregnancy, even without a doctor: First of all, ointments containing witch hazel (witch hazel) are suitable. There are also suppositories, which are usually made using natural remedies. If the haemorrhoid is swollen and inflamed, cooling is particularly important, for example with curd cheese or decongestant nasal spray. Cool sitz baths with oak bark or sea salt are also recommended.

All these measures alleviate the usual symptoms such as itching and bleeding. Smaller grade 1 or 2 haemorrhoids often retract into the rectum themselves some time after pregnancy or childbirth. Grade 3 hemorrhoids, however, must be actively repositioned. Repositioning is the pushing or pushing back of the hemorrhoid into the hemorrhoidal seam in the rectum from where it has emerged. It may be possible to do this with a finger. It is easier with the right aids:

Aids without compromise: Viball and FMS dilators

Based on my experience as a midwife and therapist, we at Theros have developed our own aids that meet the very highest standards. They are certified as medical products and therefore meet the requirements for proof of effectiveness and safety of use.

Theros FMS dilators

Dilatoren gegen Hämorrhoiden nach Geburt
Our FMS dilators made of borosilicate glass help you efficiently and, above all, gently to quickly repair hemorrhoids, often just one application is enough. With a filling, you can even prepare them as cooling bodies for the treatment of inflamed hemorrhoids. Borosilicate glass is the smoothest material of all, extremely stable and hygienic. The 27 sizes allow precise adjustment to your body and the degree of your discomfort.

Viball medical love balls

Liebeskugeln gegen Hämorrhoiden nach Geburt
Viball are love balls certified as a medical device and designed for vaginal and rectal use in women and men. They are made of polished implant steel, have no straps and are available in six sizes. Implant steel is extremely smooth and easy to clean, which is why their rectal use is particularly unproblematic. They reposition (push hemorrhoids back into the tissue) and/or prevent them from coming out again when used in everyday life. Implantable steel also has an anti-inflammatory effect. They also train the pelvic floor and continence when used rectally.
An important tip: Viball medical love balls can also be used alternately rectally and vaginally as a pelvic floor training aid (link: Viball for women) without any problems, as implant steel meets the highest clinical hygiene requirements.
Hera Schulte Westenberg
Hera Schulte Westenberg

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