Another question from the grab bag this week: Is it possible to get hemorrhoids from having anal sex?
We know that viral illnesses such as HPV are strongly associated with anal sex, but what about hemorrhoids? Is it possible that somewhere in all that friction and activity, your butt could somehow become more susceptible to the dreaded piles?
Nope. Hemorrhoids are swollen blood vessels which develop in and around the anal opening. They are associated with straining, but typically that’s from straining outward during bowel movements. The pressure of anal sex is unlikely to cause the sort of long-term swelling that leads to hemorrhoids.
That doesn’t mean you can’t get hurt, however. Constant abrasion without any lubrication can weaken the tissues, leading to other kinds of injury:
Though Lauren Streicher MD, Associate Clinical Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Feinberg School of Medicine Northwestern University and author of The Essential Guide to Hysterectomy Sex Rx, tells Bustle, “While anal sex can cause a myriad of problems (this is a one-way chute), hemorrhoids are not on the list,” lube is still super important when you’re having anal sex. Your butt lacks the natural lubrication your vagina has, and you’re at risk for tissue tears.
Bottom line, as it were: hemorrhoids come from sitting, straining, and poor diet. Anal sex has nothing to do with these things, but it can pose risks of its own, which is why it’s always wise to lube up and avoid serious trauma on this sensitive area.