Reviewed by: Missy Nolan
Can Hemorrhoids Cause Urination Problems?
According to HealthMatch, hemorrhoids are a common complaint that affects close to half of all Americans aged 50 and older. Urination problems are also prevalent, with around one-third of the population afflicted. Despite the common occurrence of these two conditions, only a small percentage of sufferers seek medical help.
Many patients with both issues wonder if hemorrhoids can cause urination problems. The simple answer is yes, the presence of hemorrhoids can have an effect on your urination habits. However, certain conditions must be present for one problem to trigger the other.
The muscles and nerves used to control bowel movements and urination are closely connected, so hemorrhoids can cause urinary incontinence or an overactive bladder. If constipation is the culprit causing hemorrhoids to form, the added pressure from stool in the rectum can also put pressure on the bladder. This interferes with bladder functions like filling, contracting, and emptying.
Another reason behind the connection often lies in the condition of the pelvic floor muscles that support the bladder, rectum, and anus. One of the most effective surgical treatments for hemorrhoids, hemorrhoidectomy, can lead to urinary problems from pain or fluid retention.
What Are Hemorrhoids?
Hemorrhoids are swollen veins located in the lower part of the rectum and anus. Also called piles, hemorrhoids are a very common complaint that affects one in 20 people in the United States. Anyone, at any age, can get hemorrhoids, but they typically occur in older individuals as they take time to develop.
Many times, symptoms of itching, pain, and rectal bleeding are mild and go away on their own or with at-home treatments. If your hemorrhoids are severe, however, you may require medical treatment. There are several types of hemorrhoids:
- External hemorrhoids: This type of hemorrhoid develops on or around the opening of the anus. They're often itchy or painful and sometimes cause mild bleeding.
- Internal hemorrhoids: These form on the inside of the anus or rectum. Internal hemorrhoids often don’t cause any discomfort in the form of pain or itching, but they can bleed.
- Prolapsed hemorrhoids: Prolapsed hemorrhoids bulge and stretch past the opening of the anus. They can cause pain or bleeding. Both internal and external hemorrhoids can prolapse.
Any type of hemorrhoid can potentially cause complications like an infection. You should get the proper treatment at the first sign of a problem to avoid side effects and complications that could worsen the problem and prolong treatment.
Symptoms of Hemorrhoids
The main symptoms of hemorrhoids vary greatly in severity and include:
- Pain or discomfort
- Rectal bleeding
Some people may not notice any discomfort but discover a small lump that indicates hemorrhoids could be present. Any of these symptoms is a reason to seek medical treatment.
Female Hemorrhoids Symptoms
The symptoms of hemorrhoids are typically the same for both genders. However, females have a higher risk of developing hemorrhoids during pregnancy and childbirth due to increased pressure on the pelvic region from carrying the baby and bearing down during childbirth. Hormone fluctuations that cause constipation can also lead to developing hemorrhoids.
Risk Factors for Hemorrhoids
Anyone, even younger people, can develop hemorrhoids, but you're more at risk if any of these conditions or lifestyle factors apply to you:
- Carrying excess weight/obesity
- Regularly lifting heavy objects
- Consuming a diet low in fiber
- Suffering from frequent diarrhea or constipation
- Spending a long time sitting on the toilet or straining during bowel movements
You can lessen your chances of developing hemorrhoids by paying attention to your lifestyle and daily habits. Make changes where you can. Staying vigilant and proactive is one of the best ways to improve your well-being and health care outcomes.
Treatments for Hemorrhoids
Home remedies and over-the-counter options include:
- Taking warm baths
- Soaking the area in a sitz bath
- Using topical medications to soothe symptoms
More severe cases could require medical treatments such as:
- Rubber band ligation
Do Hemorrhoids Put Pressure on the Bladder?
Hemorrhoids don’t put direct pressure on the bladder, but they're linked to urinary issues because pelvic floor dysfunction can cause both conditions.
Can Hemorrhoids Cause Urinary Infection?
The National Library of Medicine found evidence that recurring urinary tract infections could be caused by hemorrhoids. E. coli bacteria present in the hemorrhoids could travel through the rectogenital veins and lead to UTIs.
Can Bowel Problems Affect Urination?
It's possible for bowel problems, particularly an obstruction like constipation, to have an effect on urination. Constipation causes stools to put pressure on the bladder, leading to problems with the bladder not filling or emptying completely, along with the possibility of bladder contractions happening at the wrong times.
What Are Considered Urine Problems?
There are several types of urine problems that can interrupt your sleep and interfere with your life. Some of the most common are waking multiple times at night to urinate (nocturia), pain or burning while urinating, or feeling the urge to go but being unable to. Find out more about the three main urine problems.
Overactive Bladder (OAB)
If you often have a sudden and frequent urge to pass urine, you may have an overactive bladder. It affects approximately 33 million people in the United States, most commonly those aged 65 and older. OAB has a number of causes:
- Being overweight
- Taking certain medications
- Consuming high amounts of alcohol or caffeine
- Nerve damage
- Trauma to the abdominal area
If you experience any of the common symptoms of nocturia, frequent urination, urge incontinence, or urinary urgency, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor. Treatment is available for overactive bladder symptoms, including medication, behavior changes, and nerve stimulation. An overactive bladder is one of the top causes of frequent urination in women. OAB can continue to worsen without treatment, so call your doctor as soon as you notice any of the above symptoms.
Leaking urine due to a loss of control of the bladder is called urinary incontinence. It affects both women and men, though it's more common in women. Incontinence can range from an occasional annoyance to a major issue that interferes with your daily routine. There are several types of urinary incontinence:
- Stress incontinence refers to leaking urine due to the pressure of coughing, sneezing, or lifting heavy objects.
- Pregnancy incontinence occurs during and after pregnancy from the pressure of the baby or weakened pelvic floor muscles.
- Overflow incontinence happens when there's frequent urine leakage after the bladder fails to completely empty.
- Urge incontinence refers to an intense urge to urinate caused by complications from a disease, infection, or neurological impairment.
- Reflex incontinence refers to the involuntary contractions of the bladder without warning. This is typically an effect of an injury or neurological disorder.
- Functional incontinence is either a physical or mental impairment that interferes with your ability to get to the bathroom when needed.
- Mixed incontinence is a combination of any of the above.
Keep track of your symptoms and when they occur. The more detail you can provide your doctor with, the more accurate your planned treatment will be. Your doctor must first diagnose the root cause of your urinary incontinence to prescribe an effective treatment. Methods range from behavior changes to pelvic floor exercises to medications. Surgery may be an effective option for those who don’t experience adequate relief from other treatment methods and lifestyle changes.
Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
Women are more susceptible to UTIs than men. Infections can happen anywhere in the urinary system and stem from bacteria, viruses, or fungi. If an infection spreads to your kidneys, you’ll likely experience worsening pain and other symptoms.
Symptoms of UTIs include:
- Cloudy urine
- Bloody urine
- Frequent urination or strong urge to go
- Foul-smelling urine
- Burning sensation during urination
- Pelvic pain
- Abdominal pain
- Flank pain
UTIs can develop due to a weakened immune system, kidney stones, or a disease like diabetes. Visit your doctor for a diagnosis and treatment.
Treatments for Urine Problems
There are many possible treatment options your doctor may recommend. The one that's right for you depends on your condition, the severity of your symptoms, and your overall health. Treatments include:
- Pelvic floor exercises (Kegels)
- Pelvic floor therapies
- Healthy lifestyle changes to improve diet and lose weight
- Natural remedies
- Bladder training
- Intermittent catheterization
- Bladder injections
When to See Your Doctor
If you've considered whether hemorrhoids can cause urination problems, it may be time to see your doctor for an exam and diagnosis so you can undergo the proper treatment. Make an appointment to discuss male or female hemorrhoids symptoms, OAB, or urinary incontinence if symptoms persist for a couple of weeks or you experience pain.
Other signs that it's time to call your physician include a problem that has no apparent cause or that starts to disrupt your life or sleeping schedule. These are unusual and indicate that there could be a deeper problem you must address as soon as possible. Be alert for any of these worrisome symptoms that indicate you should see your doctor immediately:
- Blood in urine or stool
- Red or brown urine
- Pain when urinating
- Pain in your abdomen, groin, or side
- Difficulty urinating
It’s possible for hemorrhoids or urinary incontinence to be temporary, or there could be an underlying condition that requires treatment. It’s best to visit your doctor to get additional testing when necessary to rule out any further medical needs or complications.
How to Treat Urinary Problems Caused by Hemorrhoids
Now that you know how hemorrhoids can cause urination problems, it’s time to address the issue and get relief. Too many people experience embarrassment and suffer in silence instead of getting help. There's no reason to feel shame. Hemorrhoids and urinary problems are extremely common, and doctors are used to discussing these issues with patients. You might find it helpful to keep a journal detailing your symptoms, their severity, and when they appear. These notes can help your doctor make the correct diagnosis.
Fortunately, there are also plenty of options to handle these concerns discreetly. When you're dealing with hemorrhoids and urinary issues simultaneously, life can get complicated. The combined symptoms can make you miserable and interfere with your ability to live your life according to your normal schedule.
If you prefer to control urinary incontinence or an overactive bladder using lifestyle and behavior changes, try these methods:
- Lose weight: If you're carrying excess weight, the added strain can contribute to stress incontinence and OAB. Adopting a healthier lifestyle that focuses on regular exercise, good food choices, and overall wellness like stress management can assist you with dropping those pounds and improving your symptoms.
- Pelvic floor exercises: These exercises, called Kegels, strengthen the pelvic floor and surrounding muscles to help you gain greater control over your bladder. However, they aren't suitable for everyone, so check with your doctor before incorporating Kegels or other pelvic exercises.
- Bladder training: Try setting a schedule for your trips to the bathroom. Visit the bathroom each time, even if you don’t feel the urge to go. Start with bathroom breaks every 15 to 30 minutes if necessary and gradually extend the time in between to several hours. This practice allows you to slowly train your body to delay urinating even if you feel the urge, so you can avoid accidents.
Another excellent way to address these problems discreetly is by using Nexwear products to guard against leaks. Nexwear features a selection of disposable pads and underwear that are comfortable and effective. Wear them every day so you can participate in your favorite activities without worrying about having an accident.
You can even have them delivered right to your door for even greater convenience. The packaging doesn't give away what's inside, so you can order with confidence that no one knows your business but you. Nexwear products give you the freedom to reclaim your life and live without embarrassment or restriction. Browse their selection of products today to find your favorites and get back to living life on your terms.