If you’ve been pooping blood recently, hopefully, you haven’t been ignoring it like it’s no big deal. Seeing bright red blood on the toilet paper or in the toilet bowl is definitely a sign that something is not exactly right in your body at that moment, particularly in your gastrointestinal tract.
Rectal bleeding (known medically as hematochezia) refers to the passage of bright red blood from the anus, often mixed with stool and/or blood clots. Most rectal bleeding comes from the colon, rectum, or anus and can be associated with diarrhea. The color of the blood during rectal bleeding often depends on the location of the bleeding in the gastrointestinal tract.
Generally, the closer the bleeding site is to the anus, the blood will be a brighter red. Thus, bleeding from the anus, rectum, and the sigmoid colon tends to be bright red, whereas bleeding from the transverse colon and the right colon (transverse and right colon are several feet away from the anus) tend to be dark red or maroon colored.
Hemorrhoids are swellings that can occur in the anus and lower back passage (lower rectum). There is a network of small blood vessels (veins) within the inside lining of the anus and lower rectum. These veins sometimes become wider and filled with more blood than usual. These swollen (engorged) veins and the overlying tissue may then form into one or more small swellings called hemorrhoids.
This is a tear in the lining of the rectum caused by the passage of hard stools. If you have pain in your rectum or anus upon defecating, then it’s likely you have a fissure that’s getting torn open by the bowel movement, causing bloody stools.
Diverticula are outpouchings that project from the bowel wall. Their development is caused by decreased fiber in the diet. When the diverticula become inflamed and infected it is called diverticulitis.
Colitis and proctitis
Colitis means inflammation of the colon. Proctitis means inflammation of the rectum. Several different diseases can cause colitis and proctitis. These include bacterial or viral infection, ulcerative colitis or proctitis, Crohn’s colitis, ischemic colitis, and radiation colitis or proctitis.
Additionally, the less common rectal bleeding causes include:
- Ulcerative colitis
- Ischemic colitis (inflammation of the colon caused by reduced blood flow)
- Diarrhea (to the point that it causes anal irritation)
- Rectal prolapse
- Solitary rectal ulcer syndrome (a sore on the wall of the rectum)
- Anal cancer
- Colon polyps
- Colon cancer
- Angiodysplasia (abnormalities in the blood vessels near intestines)
- Cholecystitis (gallbladder inflammation)
Calm Bleeding Hemorrhoids
So, if hemorrhoids are the cause of your rectal breeding, here’s what you can do in order to prevent or stop them:
Dietary changes: To prevent hemorrhoids as well as treat them, you should increase the amount of fiber in your diet in order to relieve constipation (and consequent training, which increases pressure in the veins surrounding the anus). You can do this by eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
Exercise: Regular exercise promotes bowel function and health.
Supplements: Triphala, a combination of three tonifying herbs from the Ayurvedic tradition, is another excellent bowel regulator.
Apply aloe vera gel to the anal area frequently; it feels good and promotes healing. Avoid tobacco use in all forms. Instead of dry toilet paper, use compresses of witch hazel (which acts as an astringent) to clean the anal area after bowel movements.
Eliminate Infection – Antibiotic/Antimicrobial Treatment
First, you need to eliminate any pathogenic microorganisms (yeast, fungus, bad bacteria, parasites, viruses, etc.) using a natural antibiotic/antimicrobial treatment such as olive leaf extract or wild oregano oil. Wild oregano oil is also an anti-inflammatory and has been used extensively with burn patients to speed healing.
Therefore, follow the antibiotic/antimicrobial treatment with high doses of probiotics to repopulate the gut with good, healthy bacteria to ensure ongoing good digestion and to prevent a recurrence of infection with microorganisms.
Improve Ulcerative Colitis
If your anal bleeding stems from your struggle with ulcerative colitis, there are some awesome natural remedies for ulcerative colitis. For starters, it’s important to follow a healing diet and avoid problematic trigger foods like dairy products, spicy foods and refined sugar. Foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids and probiotics reduce inflammation and help with nutrient absorption.
Drink plenty of water with your meals and between meals. Water helps soften your stool. If you do not drink enough fluids, your body will pull water from the colon, hardening the stools. Also avoid caffeinated beverages, which cause your body to lose water.
Snack on a handful of dried prunes. A review in the ”Natural Medicine Journal” notes that this dried fruit acts as a mild laxative. They are also high in soluble and insoluble fiber, which helps to soften stool.
Drink an Epsom salt-water mixture: Epsom salt and water is not only the greatest thing to ever happen to sore muscles, but it’s also good to loosen up some troubling stool.
Drink mineral oil: Mineral oil is a lubricant laxative. When delivered orally, it can promote bowel movement by coating the stool as well as the bowel with a waterproof film. This keeps the moisture within the stool so that it passes easier.
Finally, no matter the root of your rectal bleeding, reducing your stress levels will help to promote healing and decrease bodily inflammation. Scientific research has clearly shown that chronic stress is linked to the human body losing its natural ability to properly control the inflammatory response.