Hemorrhoids (piles) are easy to understand in the same way that your truck is easy to understand … you've got to start with the basics! If we were to ask you to describe your truck you'd probably start with the basic mechanical structure and go from there. You'd tell us about the frame, and the cab, and the chassis, and whether it's a V-nose or a flat-nose. You'll build on that outline to explain your truck in more detail. Perhaps you'd tell us about the suspension and the drive train and the engine and so on.

This is how we want to explain what hemorrhoids are and exactly how sitting in your truck hour after hour aggravates them or even causes them. We'll try to keep it down to earth by avoiding unnecessary and confusing medical jargon. So, buckle your seat belt, Good Buddy … let's put our toes on the bumper and talk about those 'hoids.

A little known fact is that if you were to study body anatomy you would find that “hemorrhoidal” cushions are a normal part of the rectum during development in the uterus. These structures (usually three in number) are filled with blood vessels and sensitive nerve endings and function as pressure pads. They signal the brain when it's time to have a bowel movement. Without them we've got no control over our bowels. They are very flexible and fill with, and drain, blood depending upon the need of the body at the time, for example, for cushioning or for regulating muscles surrounding the rectal canal. They're fantastic and wonderfully complex structures.

So why do they have such a bad reputation? When the vessels contained within the hemorrhoidal cushion become aborted, they can lose their ability to drain blood out so they remain full and swollen. They ever get thick and knotted and stretched and become a constant, abnormal presence in the rectal canal. Once this occurs, you have what people usually think of as a 'hemorrhoid'. The hemorrhoids may be completely inside the rectum and not visible except with a medical instrument. Or, the vessels around the anus may become twisted and knotted and stacked (like piles). These are external hemorrhoids and can easily be seen. They may appear as purple balls.

Once that “lovely” hemorrhoidal cushion has become inflamed and irritated, a cycle begins which can be described as “the worse it gets, the worse it gets”. As you constantly sit in that monster truck of yours, pressure increases in your lower abdomen which causes even more strain on the vessels surrounding the hemorrhoid. This, coupled with your poor diet and bad bowels habits (training, delaying, irregularity), causes constipation which in turn increases the pressure yet more. As the constipation becomes chronic, the hard, dry stool with its sharp edges cuts and scrapes the tender hemorrhoid tissue as it passes which causes your to delay bowel movements or to strain excessively when you do pass stool … and on and on it goes .

Hemorrhoids have been the “butt” of many jokes but there is nothing funny about them. They are painful and they bleed. They burn and they itch. They drain and they swell. They can be very serious. In short, they make your life miserable! Stay tuned for more … we'll talk about how to deal with them! 10-10 for now, Ace!