There are a few different types of hernias with a variety of causes, some of which are due to unhealthy lifestyle habits. Depending on the severity of the hernia, a surgical procedure may be necessary to treat the problem.
What Is A Hernia?
A hernia occurs when tissue or an internal organ pushes through a weak or broken down muscle wall or tissue opening. Hernias often occur in the abdominal region but can also happen in the upper thigh and groin areas. They fall into several categories, including inguinal, umbilical, femorl, and hiatal. Inguinal are the most common type and account for 70% of all hernias. They occur when the fat or intestines push through a weak wall in the lower abdomen, usually in the inguinal canal that is part of the groin.
What are the Different Types of Hernias?
- Abdominal Hernia
- Component Separation
- Epigastric Hernia
- Femoral Hernia
- Inguinal Hernia
- Paraesophageal Hernia
- Umbilical Hernia
- Ventral Hernia
- Inguinal Hernia
- Hiatal Hernia
What Are The Symptoms?
Hernia symptoms include swelling or bulging at the affected site, particularly when lifting something heavy, coughing, or bending over. You may also feel a dull ache and experience an increase in bulge size. Other symptoms depend on the type of hernia. For instance, a hiatal hernia can cause swallowing difficulties, chest pain, and acid reflux issues.
How Do Hernias Happen?
Weak muscle walls subject to continual strain can result in hernias, such as strain from pregnancy, physical activity, frequent coughing, or constipation. Chronic constipation and coughs both significantly increase hernia risk, as does being overweight or obese. Certain diseases, such as cystic fibrosis, can also contribute to hernias since the condition is characterized by a chronic cough. Smoking also causes chronic cough which can cause or worsen hernias.
What Are The Treatment Options?
While small hernias may not, most do require surgical procedures. Open surgery, for example, cuts into the site of the hernia to push the organ or tissue back into place and sew the torn muscle wall. Laparoscopic surgery and robotic hernia repair both use tiny incisions and surgical tools to perform the same type of treatment. The right surgical procedure depends on the type of hernia and the patient’s overall health.
How Can I Prevent Them?
Lifestyle changes can keep hernias from returning. For instance, performing exercises that strengthen the abdominal wall; maintaining a healthy weight; drinking plenty of water and enjoying a balanced diet to help prevent constipation; and avoiding habits that trigger coughing such as smoking all contribute significantly to hernia prevention.