What Makes Bowel Movements Painful?

Painful bowel movements are more than just uncomfortable; they can be embarrassing and hard to explain to your physician. If you’re having trouble while visiting the restroom, it might be time to seek out help from a doctor with experience treating this condition.

Texas Surgical Care in Kingwood, Texas handles a variety of colorectal issues, including rectal pain, hemorrhoids, and anal fissures. If you’re not sure what’s causing your painful bowel movements, Dr. Ronald Ambre can diagnose the issue and help you find a treatment plan that addresses the cause directly.

Common causes of painful bowel movements

It’s not unusual to have a painful bowel movement once in a while, but if you’re dreading every visit to the toilet, it might be a sign something is wrong. There are many different reasons you could be experiencing pain, but here are a few of the most common causes of painful bowel movements:


This is a common problem, one that increases with age. Approximately 50% of adults will experience hemorrhoids by the time they reach age 50. Hemorrhoids can lead to pain during bowel movements, along with:

  • Itching, irritation, and pain around the anus
  • Painful lumps or swelling
  • Blood after wiping

Anal fissures

Anal fissures are small tears, cracks, or cuts in your rectum, which can cause pain while using the restroom. These aren’t uncommon, especially if you regularly engage in anal sex, have frequent diarrhea, or have recently given birth. Other symptoms of fissures include:

  • Sharp pain in the anus while pooping
  • Blood after wiping
  • Visible tears in the anus

Ulcerative Colitis

This is a form of irritable bowel disease (IBD) that causes ulcers in the colon, which can lead to painful bowel movements. There’s no cure for this condition, but you and your doctor can create a plan to manage flare-ups. Other symptoms include:

  • Feeling “full” even after passing waste
  • Anemia
  • Cramping abdominal pain
  • Sudden urge to poop, often at night

When to seek help

Even if you have plenty of information on-hand, it can be difficult to diagnose medical issues by yourself. Many different conditions can cause painful bowel movements, including endometriosis, sexually transmitted illnesses, and even cancer, in addition to those listed above.

If you’re suffering from painful bowel movements, it’s important to seek help as soon as possible. Your doctor can diagnose the issue definitively and begin treatment to alleviate your symptoms and solve the problem.

Are you struggling every time you visit the bathroom? Get in touch with Dr. Ambre to figure out why. You can schedule a visit by calling 832-280-8691, or request an appointment online.

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