Many topical hemorrhoid treatments exist, from creams you can buy at a store to DIY solutions you can make at home. Before you select one of those options, it’s recommended you speak to your doctor and receive a diagnosis, especially if you’re experiencing bleeding, severe pain or persistent hemorrhoids. Your doctor can rule out other potentially more serious health issues, recommend a more long-term solution to hemorrhoids, and explain your treatment options.
With that said, the following treatments may provide the immediate relief you need to go about your day.
Nonprescription, over-the-counter (OTC) hemorrhoid creams usually include hydrocortisone, phenylephrine, lidocaine or a combination of similar ingredients.
Phenylephrine is a vasoconstrictor that shrinks blood vessels. Hydrocortisone is a steroid that calms your immune response to decrease inflammation. Both of these ingredients can relieve hemorrhoid symptoms like itching, pain and burning.
Lidocaine is a local anesthetic that temporarily numbs the area.
Here are OTC creams to consider for hemorrhoid symptom relief:
It is important to keep in mind that these treatments are not meant to be used long-term. Talk to your doctor about which OTC Hemorrhoid Cream may be right for you.
If you prefer to try homemade hemorrhoid ointments or creams or use natural remedies, there are a few options. Here are a some DIY treatments you might try for fast relief:
How you apply hemorrhoid cream depends on the type of product you choose. Some hemorrhoid creams can be applied inside the anal area, while others are made only for external use. For example, Preparation H anti-itch cream is for external use only. You can apply this cream to the affected area three to four times a day. If symptoms do not subside after seven days or clear up then reappear, it’s recommended to stop using the cream and meet with a doctor.
Regardless of the cream you choose, make sure to carefully read its directions to prevent harmful side effects and get the most relief from the product. And remember to speak with your doctor before choosing a cream option to select one that’s right for you.
According to the Mayo Clinic, you can use pads soaked with witch hazel, like Tucks Medicated Cooling Pads, to relieve hemorrhoid symptoms during pregnancy. It may also be safe to use an OTC hydrocortisone cream. It’s best to talk to your doctor and ask what they recommend before using any hemorrhoid remedy, but there are safe options to use during pregnancy.
OTC hemorrhoid creams and ointments can be effective for temporarily relieving symptoms, but creams do not make hemorrhoids go away permanently. The effectiveness of hemorrhoid cream can vary with the product used and the individual. Most home remedies and OTC hemorrhoid creams have not been studied for safety or effectiveness for prolonged use, but if used too often or for more than a week, hemorrhoid creams could cause side effects.