Are embarrassing health issues keeping you up at night? Dr. Oz answers questions from audience members to help put their minds at ease.
Michelle wants to know how to ease the pain of her anal fissures. "Kudos to you," Dr. Oz says. "You've come out and spoken about something that 75 percent of us have problems with [that causes pain] down there during our lifetimes."
Anal fissures are small tears in the tissue that lines the anus often caused by hard bowel movements, constipation or constant diarrhea. Anal fissures—often mistaken for hemorrhoids—can make going to the bathroom painful and may cause some bleeding. "The good news is at least for 90 percent of people you can treat it with extra water, fiber and doing things that avoid irritating it—for example, straining, [eating] really hot foods, spicy foods."
If the fissures don't get better in two to four weeks, Dr. Oz says patients might need to undergo a four-finger procedure to stretch the muscle or have Botox injected into the muscle.
"One of the things that people need to do is to soak in warm baths. That actually helps it a lot by relaxing that part of your bottom," he says. "What works really effectively [at work] is get a warm heating pad, and sit on it when you're at work. It will warm that area up. And you've got to keep it dry because if it's wet, those cracks don't heal."