Taking a sitz bath is the most common home remedy you will come across to get some relief from the swelling and irritation caused due to piles. Sitz bath is not a medical procedure so you don’t have to be anxious to use it. For people suffering from problems in the anorectal region including piles, a sitz bath is a blessing.
A sitz bath is derived from a German word sitzen. The word literally translates to ‘sitting’. Sitz bath is defined as a warm, shallow bath that cleanses the region between anus and vulva/scrotum. This is effective in curing some of the common symptoms of piles that you experience such as pain, itching or swelling. Got yourself a sitz bath but not aware of its usage or procedure? Read along as we discuss some of the questions related to taking a sitz bath.
How To Take A Sitz Bath
The procedure to take a sitz bath remains more or less the same regardless of which kind you opt for.
- Installing the insert. Start by lifting the toilet lid and seat. To ensure that the plastic sitz bath is fitted properly and doesn’t shift unnecessarily, place the plastic sitz bath gently over the toilet seat.
- Filling the bath with water. Using a pitcher or measuring cup, fill the sitz bath with clean water. Make sure the water is not too hot but it is warm enough so that it doesn’t become cold over time. You need to make sure that the water stays warm enough for a good 10 to 15 minutes.
- Filling the solution bag. If the sitz bath that you have purchased comes with a soluting bag, fill it with warm water and attach it to the tube to the connection point on the tube insert. Make sure that the clamped shut properly. Once you are seated comfortably on the sitz bath, release the water into the bath by opening the clamp.
- Adding therapeutic ingredients. People often add Epsom salt, witch hazel or other ingredients to get some extra relief. The Epsom salt gets only dissolved in warm water. You can use a spoon to mix or dissolve. But if you have any cuts or abrasions near your anus or rectum, avoid vinegar bath solutions.
- Soaking and relaxing. Sit in the sitz bath for at least 10 or 15 minutes. It is important that you take the time to relax when you sit in the sitz bath. You can read a book or listen to music. If you are using a sitz bath with vents, then keep a pitcher of warm water nearby. If you are using a bath with a solution bag, regulate the water flow using the clamp.
- Drying with a towel. When you are finished, pat the anal area dry and surrounding skin dry using a clean towel. If touching the area causes extreme pain, then use a blow dryer to dry the area or simply air-dry it.
- Moisturizing. Soaking the skin prevents the loss of any moisture or infiltration of bacteria. Hence, after soaking the skin away for 10 to 15 minutes, dab some petroleum jelly onto the swollen veins to protect the soft tissues while passing stools.
- Cleaning the sitz bath. Scrub the bath inside and out thoroughly using dish soap and warm water. Do the same for the solution bag and the tube by shaking the bag vigorously and passing soapy water through the tube.
- Washing your hands. This is the most important step but people often tend to ignore this one. An antibacterial sanitizer might not kill all the germs so its significant that you lather your hands with clean, running water and soap. To get rid of all the germs, wash your hands thoroughly for at least 30 seconds. In addition to your hand, lather the palms, wrists, back of the hands, fingers and under the nails.
When Can I Take a Sitz Bath?
You might don’t know that taking a sitz bath increases blood circulation throughout the body including the anal region. Another benefit of using a sitz bath is to clean the anal region completely. Apart from all these advantages, some others are-
- It helps to ease out the pain caused due to an anal fissure
- After childbirth, many treatment options cannot be opted by new mothers. But taking a sitz bath soothes the perineum for women who have recently gone vaginal birth
- It also helps to ease out period cramps
- After a procedure or during prostatitis, taking a sitz bath helps to get relief from prostate pain
Sitz bath is the fastest and easiest way to get relief from the agonizing pain caused due to piles. If you are unable to find yourself a sitz bath or unwilling to buy one, you can take a sitz bath in your bathtub also. Even after taking a sitz bath, the pain or swelling or irritation is persistent or gets worse over time, it is time to seek some professional help. Fortunately, with the upgradation of technology in the health sector, you can opt for the painless laser treatment for curing piles at any stage. Visit a doctor today to know more about this treatment option.