An anal fissure is a small cut or tear in the skin lining the anus. Childbirth, straining during bowel movements, or bouts of constipation or diarrhea can all tear the anal lining. Anal fissures are usually not a cause for concern and most heal without any medical treatment.
Major Symptoms of Anal Fissure:
-a visible tear in the skin around your anus
-a skin tag, or small lump of skin, next to the tear
-sharp pain in the anal area during bowel movements
-streaks of blood on stools or on tissue paper after wiping
-burning or itching in the anal area
Major Causes of Anal Fissure:
-Crohn’s disease or another IBD
-Straining during childbirth
-Decreased blood flow to the anorectal area
-Overly tight or spastic anal sphincter muscles
Natural Treatment for Anal Fissure:
1. Olive Oil – Mix equal amounts of olive oil, honey and beeswax in a bowl. Warm it in a microwave until the beeswax melts completely. Allow it to cool, then apply it on the affected area. Repeat a few times daily.
2. Aloe Vera – Cut off one leaf of an aloe vera plant. Slice it lengthwise and use a spoon to scrape out the gel. Apply some of this gel on the affected area. Do this a few times a day.
Additional Tips to Follow:
1. Include high fiber foods in your diet every day. Fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains are good choices.
2. Avoid spicy food and those that are hard to digest as these would cause further irritation and difficulty in the passage of stools. Examples include chilly peppers, popcorn, chilly seeds etc.
3. Keep drinking lots of water, juices and other fluids throughout the day. Ideally you should drink at least eight to ten glasses of water in a day.
4. You can ask your doctor to prescribe a fiber supplement everyday if you think your body needs it.
5. Get some exercise every day. You should do some moderate exercises for about two and a half hours a week. If you indulge in rigorous exercises, an hour and a half of exercises in a week is usually sufficient.
6. To get relief from the tissue inflammation, you can sit in a tub of warm water for about half an hour. Repeat this twice or thrice a day. This process will help the internal anal sphincter muscles to relax and heal.
Foods to avoid:
If you have an anal fissure, you will need to avoid eating certain foods.
1. White flour and sugar – you should not have pastries, cakes, biscuits, preservatives, cheese and rice.
2. Spicy foodS – do not eat spicy foods when you are trying to treat anal fissure or in a anal fissure diet.
3. High fat snacks – doughnuts, potato chips, cheese products (including pizza), fried foods, and marbled meats.
4. Processed foods – such as packaged foods and frozen meals.
How to prevent Anal Fissure:
1. Get Plenty of Fiber – Get plenty of fiber in your diet, especially from fruits and vegetables. Get 20 to 35 grams of fiber per day. Foods that are good sources include:
· Wheat bran
· Oat bran
· Whole grains, including brown rice, oatmeal, popcorn, and whole-grain pastas, cereals, and breads
· Peas and beans
· Seeds and nuts
· Citrus fruits
· Prunes and prune juice
If you can’t get enough fiber through your diet, try fiber supplements. Also, drink plenty of liquids as you take in more fiber. This will help you avoid bloating and gas.
2. Stay Hydrated – Drinking plenty of liquids. Be sure to drink more when the weather gets warmer or as you become more physically active.
3. Exercise – Exercise for at least 30 minutes most days to help keep your digestive system moving and in good shape. Work toward 150 minutes or more per week.
4. Don’t Ignore Your Urge to Go – If your body tells you it’s time to have a bowel movement, don’t put it off till later. Waiting too long or too often can weaken the signals that let you know it’s time to go. The longer you hold it in, the dryer and harder it can get, which makes it tougher to pass.
5. Practice Healthy Bowel Habits – Check these habits regularly to lower your risk of getting a painful anal fissure:
·When using the bathroom, give yourself enough time to pass bowel movements comfortably. But don’t sit on the toilet too long.
·Don’t strain while passing stools.
·Keep the anal area dry.
·Gently clean yourself after each bowel movement.
·Use soft, dye-free, and scent-free toilet paper or wipes.
·Get treatment for ongoing diarrhea.