Hemorrhoids occur when the walls of blood vessels in the lower part of the anus and rectum become inflamed, swollen, stretched or irritated. These swollen hemorrhoids are also called piles, and are a relatively common condition estimated to affect nearly half of the American population by age 50. While they are generally preventable, treatable and rarely dangerous, hemorrhoids are an uncomfortable nuisance that can be reoccurring and sometimes excruciating.1,2
There are two types of hemorrhoids, internal and external. An internal hemorrhoid is not visible from outside of the body, and is located inside the rectum. Rectal bleeding is often a symptom of internal hemorrhoids, but generally does not hurt.1,2
External hemorrhoids can become very painful if left untreated as they develop outside of the body around the anus where there are more sensitive nerves. Blood clots or itchy skin tags can also develop around an external hemorrhoid. A prolapsed hemorrhoid occurs when an inflamed internal hemorrhoid protrudes through the anal canal due to excessive straining.1
There are several causes of hemorrhoids including chronic constipation, pregnancy, or straining during bowel movements. Hemorrhoids have also been linked to individuals who regularly conduct heavy lifting, or stand or sit for prolonged periods of time. The risk of developing hemorrhoids also appears to increase with age.1,2,3
You should seek medical advice when first treating hemorrhoids, as they can become worse over time.1 Thankfully, many symptoms can be addressed with minimal inconvenience, though extreme cases may require surgery or strong medicines.
For those wondering how to get rid of hemorrhoids, home remedies for hemorrhoids can be made with essential oils and can be easily used in conjunction with conventional treatments.
Essential Oils for Hemorrhoids
If you’re looking for ways on how to treat hemorrhoids naturally, the following list includes the best essential oils for bleeding, inflammation and other symptoms of irritation or discomfort. Used traditionally in homeopathic remedies, tea tree, chamomile and lavender are among the most commonly used essential oils to treat hemorrhoids.
For people who dislike, or cannot use, over-the-counter medications for hemorrhoid relief, essential oils may be an effective, alternative solution. Essential oils can aid in the reduction of inflammation around the blood vessels, but may also relieve itching, bleeding and promote blood supply to the area.
It is recommended to seek the advice of a medical professional before applying any topical essential oil for hemorrhoids. Users should never ingest essential oils for internal hemorrhoids.
Tea Tree Oil for Hemorrhoids
Possibly the best essential oil for hemorrhoids, tea tree oil’s therapeutic properties can address symptoms of pain, bleeding, inflammation and other difficulties occurring during bowel movements.
In a 2012 study, researchers investigated the question ‘will tea tree oil help hemorrhoids when used in a topical gel?’. Researchers recruited 36 patients suffering from painful hemorrhoid symptoms to participate in the two-week clinical trial. Those who received a topical treatment of a tea tree oil gel mixture noted a significant reduction in symptoms when compared to those receiving a placebo cream.4
While essential oils and hemorrhoids is a relatively new area of research, promising results have been noted thus far. For those wondering ‘does tea tree oil shrink hemorrhoids?’, more research is required.
For an easy, tea tree oil hemorrhoids remedy, mix 2 drops of tea tree essential oil with 1 Tsp. of castor oil. Apply to the affected area with a cotton pad 1-2 times daily for a week.
Chamomile for Hemorrhoids
There are several benefits of chamomile essential oil including anti-inflammatory and pain relieving properties. Chamomile is often considered an effective essential oil to reduce hemorrhoids.
Chamomile has been proven as one of the best remedies for hemorrhoids—especially for children, who may be suffering from colic or diarrhea. 5 A 2015 study also revealed that chamomile essential oil has wound healing properties and when combined with witch hazel in a compress, is an effective remedy for hemorrhoid relief.6
Chamomile can be used as an essential oil for hemorrhoids treatment when diluted with a carrier oil, such as jojoba or coconut oil and applied directly to the irritated skin. With numerous promising qualities, further research may determine if using chamomile essential oil to shrink hemorrhoids is an effective, alternative treatment.
Clove Oil Hemorrhoids
In a 2007 study, the use of clove essential oil was associated with a significant reduction in painful pressure experienced at the bottom of the rectum. 55 patients were treated with a topical application that included clove essential oil for six weeks. Results show a significant reduction in anal pressure and overall healing was experienced by 60% of patients in the experiment group.7
A topical essential oil treatment for hemorrhoids can be made with equal parts of clove oil and carrier oil, and applied to the area of pain.
Lavender Oil for Hemorrhoids
If you’re wondering what essential oil is good for hemorrhoids, lavender essential oil may not be the first come to mind. But with calming and pain relieving qualities, the therapeutic benefits of lavender essential oil make it a great addition to a topical hemorrhoid cream or sitz bath.
In a 2013 study, lavender essential oil was also observed to help reduce abdominal constrictions and successfully reduce inflammation in test subjects.8 These results help confirm the use of lavender essential oil for painful, inflammatory conditions.
For an easy hemorrhoids essential oil cure, add 10 drops of lavender essential oil to a sitz bath. Often prescribed for hemorrhoids, a sitz bath can be easily made by filling a bathtub with a few inches of warm water. This will help soak the area and keep it clean. Essential oils can be added for an extra calming, or therapeutic effect.
Lavender essential oil for hemorrhoids can also be diluted with a carrier oil and applied topically to the affected area with a cloth.
Oil of Oregano Hemorrhoids
There are several benefits of oregano essential oil including potent anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties.
A 2007 study investigated oregano and thyme essential oil’s anti-inflammatory qualities. In an animal model, researchers administered three different doses of the combined essential oil mixture to treat induced colitis. Results indicate that the essential oil blend decreased inflammation and colon tissue damage.9 As the inflammation occurring in colitis has comparable symptoms as hemorrhoids, essential oils that are diluted with carrier oil may also encourage reduction in pain and discomfort in the area.
How to Use Cypress Oil for Hemorrhoids
Cypress essential oil has traditionally been used as a natural anti-inflammatory remedy. In the treatment of hemorrhoids, essential oils may decrease inflammation, bleeding and help treat other unwanted symptoms. Cypress essential oil in particular has been found as one of the most effective natural oils for hemorrhoids and is used most commonly in a sitz bath.
A 2009 study revealed that compounds found in cypress essential oil demonstrated a vasoconstriction effect (narrowing of blood vessels).10 When used topically, cypress essential oil may help reduce excessive blood flow to the area.
For effective relief of painful symptoms, add 10 drops of cypress oil to a full tub and soak for up to 30 minutes. This is especially useful after any strenuous or painful bowel movements. Using cypress oil, hemorrhoids can also be treated with a natural topical cure containing a mix of equal parts cypress oil and carrier oil.
Sandalwood Essential Oil for Hemorrhoids
One notable benefit of sandalwood essential oil is its potent anti-inflammatory activity. In a 2013 study, sandalwood essential oil was observed to significantly reduce pro-inflammatory regulators as effectively as ibuprofen.
For hemorrhoid relief at home, combine 5 drops of sandalwood oil and 1 Tbsp. of olive oil in a small bowl. Apply to the affected area 1-2 times daily.
Scientific Research Referenced in this Article
- Harvard Health Publications. (2016, January 27). Hemorrhoids and what to do about them. Harvard Health Publications. Retrieved May 15, 2017, from http://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/hemorrhoids_and_what_to_do_about_them – View reference
- National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Kidney Diseases. (2013, November). Hemorrhoids. Retrieved May 15, 2017, from https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/digestive-diseases/hemorrhoids – View reference
- Sanchez, C., & Chinn, B. T. (2011). Clinics in colon and rectal surgery, 24(01), 005-013. DOI: 10.1055/s-0031-1272818
- Joksimovic, N., Spasovski, G., Joksimovic, V., Andreevski, V., Zuccari, C., & Omini, C. F. (2012). Efficacy and tolerability of hyaluronic acid, tea tree oil and methyl-sulfonyl-methane in a new gel medical device for treatment of haemorrhoids in a double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Updates in Surgery, 64(3), 195-201. doi:1007/s13304-012-0153-4
- Gardiner, P. (2007, April). Complementary, Holistic and Integrative Medicine Chamomile. Pediatrics in Review,28(4), e16-8. DOI: 10.1542/pir.28-4e16
- Abascal, K. (2005). Botanical Treatments for Hemorrhoids. Alternative and Complementary Therapies,11(6), 285-289. DOI: 10.1089/act.2005.11.285
- Elwakeel, H. A., Moneim, H. A., Farid, M., & Gohar, A. A. (2007). Clove oil cream: a new effective treatment for chronic anal fissure. Colorectal Disease, 9(6), 549-552. doi:1111/j.1463-1318.2006.01185.x
- Hajhashemi, V. (2003). Anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties of the leaf extracts and essential oil of Lavandula angustifolia Mill. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 89(1), 67-71. Retrieved May 15, 2017 from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=Anti-inflammatory+and+analgesic+properties+of+the+leaf+extracts+and+essential+oil+of+Lavandula+angustifolia+Mill – View reference.
- Bukovská, A., Cikoš, Š., Juhás, Š., Il’ková, G., Rehák, P., & Koppel, J. (2007). Effects of a Combination of Thyme and Oregano Essential Oils on TNBS-Induced Colitis in Mice. Mediators of Inflammation, 2007, 1-9. doi:1155/2007/23296
- Gulec, M., Ogur, R., Husamettin, G., Kokmaz, A., & Bakir, B. (2009). Investigation of Vasoactive Ion Content of Herbs Used in Hemorrhoid Treatment in Turkey. Gulhane Medican School. Retrieved May 15, 2017 from http://www.pjps.pk/wp-content/_uploads/pdfs/CD-PJPS-22-2-09/Paper-13.pdf