Hemorrhoids are bumps on the anus or rectum caused by inflamed blood vessels. These bumps can develop internally, externally, or both. While some hemorrhoids disappear after remaining unnoticed, some hemorrhoids become persistent and extremely painful. These hemorrhoids affect daily mobility, rest, and mental health.
In severe cases, hemorrhoids may bleed and or get infected. Hence, they demand attention and medical intervention.
The exact causes of hemorrhoids are still under research. Chronic constipation, obesity, poor diet choices, and sitting for too long are some caused of hemorrhoids. However, medical science has been able to identify some biological factors may also cause hemorrhoids as well.
Keep reading below to learn more about what biological factors are and which of these factors could cause hemorrhoids.
What Are Biological Factors?
Biological factors are all the genetic, physical, physiological, neurological, and chemical factors that directly or indirectly produce a physical or psychological effect. These factors may include age, hormone levels, gender, nutrition, and other genetic influences.
A person’s biological factors determine their health and mental wellbeing. These factors affect a person’s susceptibility and risks of a disease or an illness.
For instance, some diseases such as breast cancer are more prone to affect the female gender, especially if they have the BRCA gene mutation.
Which Biological Factors Cause Hemorrhoids?
A person’s genetic makeup has a significant effect on a person’s physical and mental health. Many diseases like cancer and diabetes have hereditary influences.
Research has proven that a person’s genetic makeup affects their chances of developing hemorrhoids. This concept means if a person has family history of hemorrhoids, the chances of that person also developing hemorrhoids are high.
A study found that 102 regions of the human body contain genes that affect the risks of developing hemorrhoids.
The study concluded that severe hemorrhoidal diseases in some ways are caused by a gene-related defect in the intestinal tissue and muscle. The thinner or weaker a person’s connective tissue and muscle are, the higher the chances of them getting hemorrhoids.
Body’s Physical Attributes
Many personal, environmental, and genetic factors influence an individual’s body weight. The most apparent causes of obesity are poor diet choices and lack of physical activity.
However, science has proven that a person’s genetic makeup also influences their body physique and weight. When a person is overweight or obese, developing gastric issues and hemorrhoids are high. The body weight exerts pressure on the hemorrhoid bumps, making healing and treatment more difficult.
Moreover, when a woman is pregnant, her chances of developing hemorrhoids increase. The high abdominal weight puts more pressure on the rectum and anus. This pressure may cause hemorrhoids to form. These hemorrhoids become persistent as the pregnant belly grows in size, making sitting, walking, and sleeping difficult.
Furthermore, a person’s birth deformity or physical disability can also influence their chances of developing hemorrhoids. If a person’s congenital disability affects their mobility and causes them to remain seated for prolonged times, hemorrhoids may develop.
Prolonged sitting puts pressure on the blood vessels surrounding the anus and rectum. The accumulated blood may cause a tear in a vessel, leading to inflamed hemorrhoid bumps.
Since the person cannot change their physical activity by choice, such hemorrhoids become persistent and worsen with time.
Although there is no proven medical link between hemorrhoid development and gender, studies show that women are more prone to developing hemorrhoids than men, especially those who undergo pregnancy and childbirth. Both these instances significantly affect the woman’s chances of developing hemorrhoids.
On the other hand, studies show that the chances of a man seeking treatment are higher than women. Women are found to feel more embarrassed and thus avoid medical intervention. Hence, more women suffer from persistent hemorrhoidal diseases.
Studies show that hemorrhoids are most common among people between the ages of forty-five and sixty-five. According to research, nearly fifty percent of Americans above fifty suffer from hemorrhoids. These hemorrhoids worsen with age when a person is less able to make significant changes in their physical body and routines.
The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) has significantly contributed to hemorrhoid research and treatment.
The NIDDK states that age is a major biological factor that causes hemorrhoids. According to their research, connective tissues and muscles become thinner and weaker as a person’s body ages. When the tissue surrounding the anus and rectum weakens, the risk of it tearing or getting damaged increases. Straining due to chronic constipation or sitting for prolonged periods can put pressure on these weakened tissues, which can lead to the development of new hemorrhoids or tears in existing ones.
Since healing and tissue repair also get compromised with age, these hemorrhoids become hard to treat.
A person’s mental health can affect their physical wellbeing in many ways.
When people suffer from mental stress, they tighten their sphincter muscles and exert unhealthy pressure on the rectum and anus. As a result, hemorrhoids may form. Moreover, stress also causes some people to eat more and gain weight. These practices also increase the person’s chances of developing hemorrhoids.
Moreover, some psychological eating disorders can cause a person to make poor dietary choices. Conditions like Binge Eating disorders cause a person to continue eating unnecessarily. People who suffer from such eating disorders usually compulsively snack on unhealthy and processed food items with low nutritional value. As a result, these people have higher chances of developing hemorrhoids in their life.
Despite the commonality of the disease, a lot more hemorrhoid research still needs to be done. Besides the apparent causes, hemorrhoids are also significantly influenced by an individual’s biological factors.
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