Shockingly enough, anywhere from 50-66% of individuals will have to deal with some form of hemorrhoid at any time in their life, but for the general population, specifically the younger generation, hemorrhoids hardly cross the mind, even if they are happening all around us. The primary reason for this- it is most common to develop a hemorrhoid between 45 and 65 years old, so until one reaches the fourth decade of their lifetime, this medical situation is usually not so likely.
It might come across as scary that so many suffer with the uncomfortable symptoms of hemorrhoids, literally around half of adults at one time or another, but this medical occurrence is not actually anything to be worried or nervous about. It is typically quite easily managed by your doctor or medical practitioner, and very few cases actually require surgery. Although, some cases can of course be serious and require quick medical attention, hemorrhoids themselves are usually self-diagnosable and predominantly just require extra care and caution, along with adequate time for healing. Regarding any pain, it is possible to be on some prescription pain killer from the doctor, but more and more people with hemorrhoids, especially in cannabis legal states, have reported turning towards medical marijuana to diminish their pain and discomfort.
Keep reading to discover more information about hemorrhoids, and just how cannabis can play a role in healing…
What Are Hemorrhoids?
Hemorrhoids are essentially just the swelling of veins in the lower region of your anus or rectum. When a hemorrhoid is swollen, it is sometimes also referred to as a pile. If the walls of the blood vessels get too thin, they can cause extreme irritation within the body, especially during excretion. Hemorrhoids are classified as either internal or external, and external hemorrhoids typically produce worse symptoms and greater pain.
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It is important to note that hemorrhoids are very rarely dangerous, and often clear up after a couple of weeks. Still, if you believe you might have a hemorrhoid, it is vital to let your doctor or medical practitioner know within a timely manner so that they can take action right away. Some hemorrhoids can be extremely painful, or simply will not go away. These need to be removed by a doctor.
Internal hemorrhoids cannot be seen or felt, for they are deeper in the rectum than their external counterpart. Because of the location, they typically do not hurt because there are actually few nerve endings within the deeper region of the rectum.
External hemorrhoids on the other hand, are much more painful and can typically be seen as a pink, purple or blueish bump by the opening of the anus. In serious cases, blood clots can sometimes occur within external hemorrhoids, which is what gives them the blueish purple color. This blood clotting is referred to as a thrombosis.
Causes and Symptoms
There are a variety of factors that can cause hemorrhoids, ranging anywhere from genetics to standing or sitting for very long periods of time. Individuals who have family members who have had hemorrhoids, are at greater risk of developing them, as well as those who have extra weight, such as those who suffer from obesity, or even those who are pregnant. Sitting and standing for long durations of time frequently, can increase the risk, as well as straining during a physically difficult activity, (lifting heavy objects, etc.). Furthermore, pushing intensely during bowel movements, can cause them to arise, or if you are dealing with perpetual constipation or diarrhea, specifically if it will not clear up for long periods of time.
Some hemorrhoids never cause any symptoms at all, and it might not even be of knowledge that an individual has one. On the other hand, some do experience uncomfortable or unpleasant symptoms. Typical symptoms of internal and external hemorrhoids include, bleeding, itching or pain in the region around the anus, blood coming from the anus after using the bathroom, or seeing/feeling wet pink, purple or blue bumps around the opening of the anus. If you are experiencing rectal bleeding, it is especially important to call your doctor and notify them, because this symptom can actually be because of a number of very serious other medical conditions, and not necessarily just because of a hemorrhoid.
Conventional Medical Treatments That are Not Cannabis
Many cases of hemorrhoids can be cured with at-home methods that your doctor can recommend or explain. Conducted hot or cold bath soaks around the anus, can take away pain and some swelling, and a topical cream such as hydrocortisone can relieve itching. If your hemorrhoids are occurring due to constipation, consuming a fiber supplement, such as psyllium, can cause the body to move towards a more regular or frequent excretion cycle. If all at-home remedies seem to fail, your doctor can execute two different types of medical procedures to attempt a shrinking of the hemorrhoid or hemorrhoids. Rubber band ligation is one of these procedures, where the doctor ties a rubber band around the hemorrhoid, cutting off its circulation so that it shrinks in size. Additionally, a medical practitioner can conduct an injection therapy (sclerotherapy), where chemicals are directly injected into the hemorrhoid, causing it to decrease in size.
If the pain becomes especially unbearable, your doctor might prescribe some type of pain medication to assist with reducing some of the discomforts.
Medical Marijuana and Hemorrhoids
Although cannabis itself cannot prevent hemorrhoids from occurring, this magical and medicinal plant can assist with pain relief, where conventional medications often produce too many negative side effects or dependency issues. Those who don’t want to rely on opiates, for instance, might be able to find enough relief with cannabis to avoid pharmaceutical pain killers altogether. Additionally, some of the marijuana strains listed below can also diminish inflammation, which hemorrhoids are very much related to. Often times, having hemorrhoids can be detrimental to the state of the mind as well, making it difficult to keep stress and anxiety down, as well as sometimes encouraging depression to arise.
Some marijuana strains can alleviate mood disorders and damper down stress or anxiety, making them suitable for those who are having a difficult experience with their hemorrhoids. Lastly, because of the onset of sometimes constant pain or discomfort, having a hemorrhoid can make falling asleep difficult, sometimes leading to insomnia. Some heavier, indica dominant cannabis strains can melt the body and lead to deep sedation, quintessential for patients who find it challenging to get rest.
5 Best Marijuana Strains for Hemorrhoids
1. Cannatonic (Hybrid)
This marijuana strain is number 1 on our list for some very powerful reasons. The hybrid strain Cannatonic is not only incredible at acting as a remedy against pain and inflammation, but it also calms down stress levels and allows for one to maintain a clear head. Most of all, it is easy to function and go about day to day tasks with Cannatonic, even if you are smoking or consuming this cannabis every few hours to manage symptoms, because of its high CBD levels, which are typically double its THC levels. Although this marijuana does still have a THC presence, it isn’t an overwhelming amount, and rather just acts as a pleasant way to numb pain. Cannatonic is considered one of the world’s premier medical marijuana strains, and for very accurate reasons.
THC: around 6% or lower.
CBD: around 6-17%.
Pleasant flavor, with earthy, sweet and citrus notes, followed by hints of pine and musk.
2. Critical Mass (Indica)
A potent and rich indica strain, Critical Mass makes an ideal nighttime or before bed marijuana strain for hemorrhoid patients who would like to fall asleep in peace with little to no signs of pain or discomfort. The genetic combination of Afghani indica and Skunk No. 1 hybrid, this marijuana won’t sedate you heavily like some indicas have a tendency to do, rather it will leave you feeling happy and relaxed, free of stress and pain, and eventually you might start to feel your eyelids become heavy and tired. Critical Mass is also able to reduce inflammation within the body, which can assist with hemorrhoids, as well as dissolve any feelings of depression or anxiety. Best of all, this cannabis has an intense THC content, making just a little go a very long way, with the added bonus of a small, but still significant CBD content.
THC: around 20%.
CBD: around 5%.
Rich flavor profile and a smooth feeling hit, with notes of honey, skunk and citrus, and sweet, pungent, earthy tones.
3. Harlequin (Sativa)
The sativa dominant Harlequin strain is a rarity in the marijuana world, with an almost constant expression of a 5:2 CBD to THC ratio, causing it to generate a clear-headed, stimulating high, that not only cuts the possible paranoia and anxiousness of THC, but also adds to the strain’s pain killing and restorative abilities. Harlequin is a genetic combination of three potent and well-known sativa marijuana strains, including Colombian Gold, Thai and Swiss Sativa, and acts to resolve any pain (including chronic), inflammation, stress, anxiety or depression- all possible symptoms of hemorrhoids.
THC: around 4-7%.
CBD: around 8-16%.
Presents a variety of tastes, ranging from earthy musk and woodsy pine, to sweet and juicy mango.
4. Mazar I Sharif (Indica)
One of the world’s tallest growing cannabis strains, Mazar I Sharif is legendary and originally grew in Northern Afghanistan, reaching 4 meters or more in height if in the correct, fertile conditions. Surprisingly enough, even with its massive height, this marijuana is actually classified as an indica, and it is quite a heavy hitting one, with its potent THC content and pure, landrace genes that derive from Afghani indica. Mazar I Sharif is extremely intoxicating, producing even a narcotic-like effect if over-consumed, making it potent medicine for those suffering from physical pain and inflammation. Additionally, it is wonderful at curing insomnia or any difficulties with falling asleep. For hemorrhoid patients, this marijuana strain can numb any pain and fully relax the body, and promote healthy sleep patterns and restful nights, which isn’t always possible with this medical condition.
THC: around 15-23%.
CBD: around 1-1.5%.
A traditional marijuana strain, with spicy, herbal tastes and an earthy, woody smoke that is the ideal flavor for those who don’t desire a sweet cannabis experience.
5. Jasmine (Hybrid)
Developed by leading Israeli cannabis supplier Tikun Olam, Jasmine offers an indica dominant smoke, wrapped into a hybrid classified strain. Originally bred to be used for patients that suffer from insomnia, Jasmine has proven to be especially medicinal for a large range of ailments and difficulties, including inflammation and pain, (prevalent for those with hemorrhoids), all the way to combatting nausea and indigestion. This cannabis is well-rounded and trustworthy, particularly for medical marijuana patients.
THC: around 14-16%.
A unique and predominantly floral flavor profile, involving hints of lavender and rose, all melting into a sweet and smooth hitting cannabis.
Final Thoughts About Marijuana and Hemorrhoids
If you or a loved one suffers from the sometimes uncomfortable symptoms of hemorrhoids, medical marijuana may become a helpful alternative to conventional medications, in regards to pain relief and pain management. Most of all, consulting with your doctor to make the best decision that is right for you, can generate an ideal treatment plan. None of what is written above should be treated as medical advice, that is not its purpose. Lastly, it is important to remember that the consumption of cannabis is the sole responsibility of the user and discretion should always be taken. We hope you have enjoyed reading this article, and that you found it to be educational and informative.