Anal fissures and fistulas

How to Prevent Anal Fissures

Max. D Gray
By Max. D Gray. Updated: July 14, 2017
How to Prevent Anal Fissures

Anal fissures are cracks or small ulcers located in the folds of the anus, specifically in the mucosa of the rectal area, a very delicate area of thin tissues. This condition can be very annoying for the patient, causing pain when going to the toilet that is sometimes accompanied by bleeding. Although it is a more common pathology in babies, adults can also have it, so it is important to know how to prevent anal fissures, especially when we are prone to suffer from them. In this oneHOWTO article we explain in detail how to do it.

You may also be interested in: How to Cure a Rectal Fissure - Without Surgery
  1. Fiber intake
  2. Water intake
  3. When going to the toilet
  4. Exercise for anal fissure

Anal fissures are usually present in people who consistently present hard and big sized stools and have a poor bowel movement often characterized by constipation. Another type of common patients are those who, on the contrary, have frequent diarrhea which causes irritation in the anus and can lead to cracking of the folds in the area.

This is why improving eating habits and making some lifestyle changes could ensure a more adequate bowel movement and less annoying stools for the patient, thus helping to prevent anal fissures.

Fiber intake

When frequent constipation and hard stools occur, it is best to make adjustments in your diet by increasing the intake of fiber-rich foods such as whole grains and fresh fruits and vegetables, in order to regulate intestinal transit and thereby stools, thus helping you prevent anal fissure. Make sure you add the following into your diet in order to have a high-fiber diet:

  • Avocados (105 gr fiber per cup)
  • Figs (14.6 gr per cup)
  • Artichoke (10.3 gr fiber per artichoke)
  • Peas (8.6 gr per cup)
  • Black beans (12.2 gr of fiber per cup)
  • Chickpeas (8 grams of fiber per cup)
  • Flax seed (3 gr fiber per cup)

Water intake

To prevent anal fissures it is not only important to pay attention to our diet, but also to look at the ones we drink. Drinking at least 2 liters of water a day will be essential to ensure an adequate intestinal transit that allows us to avoid constipation and stools that can cause anal ulcers in their passage outwards. Increase the amount of water when you exercise or do high intensity activities too.

On the other hand, an excess in caffeinated drinks can make things worse and actually cause further constipation.

How to Prevent Anal Fissures - Water intake

When going to the toilet

The way in which we go to the toilet can also help prevent anal fissure, as there are certain measures that will effectively avoid many mishaps.

  • First of all, make sure you don't hold stool in for too long. To prevent anal fissure, make sure you go when your body is letting you know it needs to evacuate.
  • Avoid straining when you go to the toilet as this could cause a tear. Give yourself time for stool to pass without forcing too much.
  • Make sure you clean your anus properly, drying the area thoroughly so it's free of moist.
  • Do not clean the area with force, be gentle and use soft toilet paper when possible. Moreover, you should also make sure the paper is not scented or contains any dyes.

Exercise for anal fissure

Another key preventive method to prevent anal fissures from recurring is to get plenty of exercise. As you may know, one of the reasons for constipation is following a sedentary lifestyle, so having plenty of exercise will help you., Practicing low intensity exercises will do the trick if you're not into sport. Practice yoga, Pilates or jogging to get your system going. Moreover, stress is another cause of constipation. Exercise will also help you lower stress levels!

If, despite improving diet and fluid intake, your feces continue to be hard and causing discomfort when going to the toilet, it will be important to consult with the pharmacist in order to purchase some product that softens, facilitating the process and reducing discomfort. Your doctor may prescribe a lubricant that will help you go to the toilet more efficiently or some kind of laxative for emergencies.

If you also get frequent diarrhea when suffering from anal fissure, it is very important to determine its origin correctly in order to treat it adequately. Going to a gastroenterologist is key to keep up with our health and finding the source of the problem that can lead to these ulcers. If you need a proper operation, take a look at our article on what to expect after fissure surgery so you can convince yourself to have this surgery if you frequently suffer from this condition.

For patients with conditions such as colitis, irritable bowel or Crohn's disease, it is essential to control your diet to prevent anal fissures. If you suffer from any of these conditions we recommend you check our articles on what to eat if you have colitis or what to eat if you have irritable bowel syndrome.

How to Prevent Anal Fissures -

If you continue having anal fissures after making the dietary changes and following the suggestions in this article, it is advisable to visit your doctor for a professional treatment. For more information we invite you to read our article how to treat anal fissure.

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Prevent Anal Fissures, we recommend you visit our Diseases & secondary effects category.


  • Did you know that babies are also prone to anal fissures? If this is your child's case, it is also advisable to change their diapers often.
  • Fiber supplements are also a good option if you can't manage to add enough fiber through diet.
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How to Prevent Anal Fissures