What Is a Hernia?
A hernia occurs when an organ pushes through an opening in the muscle or tissue that holds it in place. For example, the intestines may break through a weakened area in the abdominal wall.
Hernias are most common in the abdomen, but they can also appear in the upper thigh, belly button, and groin areas. Most hernias are not immediately life threatening, but they don’t go away on their own and can require surgery to prevent potentially dangerous complications.
Hernias are caused by a combination of muscle weakness and strain from different factors such as failure of abdominal wall to close properly in the womb, age, chronic coughing, damage from injury while straining of the body includes being pregnant, constipation from the bowel movement, heavy weight lifting, fluid in the abdomen, sudden gain weight and persistent coughing or sneezing.
Types of Hernia
If left untreated, a hernia may grow and become more painful. The most common indication of a hernia is a bulge or lump in the affected area. If it is not treated immediately, it may also result in other potential complications.
The common types of Hernia are:
1) Inguinal Hernia,
Inguinal Hernia is the most common type of Hernia. Notice a lump on either side of your pubic bone where your groin and thigh meet especially when you are standing up. Its is found commonly in men than women. This is because a man’s testicles descend through the inguinal canal shortly after birth, and the canal is supposed to close almost completely behind them.
2) Hiatal Hernia
A hiatal hernia occurs when part of your stomach protrudes up through the diaphragm into your chest. Hiatal Hernia is most common for people over 50 years old. The first few symptoms includes pain or discomfort in the affected areas especially when bending over, coughing or a sense of burning and aching sensation at the site of the bulge. Other symptoms includes chest pain or difficulty swallowing.
3) Umbilical Hernia
Umbilical hernia can occur in children and babies as early as 6 months old. If you notice a bulge through their abdominal wall near their bellybutton, it's an early indication that it is umbilical hernia. Fortunately, umbilical hernia is the only one that cure on its own, normally by the time the child is 1 years old, if not necessary surgery is required.
4) Incisional Hernia
Incisional hernias can occur after you’ve had abdominal surgery. Your intestines may push through the incision scar or the surrounding, weakened tissue. Some of the symptoms you should look out for are such as fever, infection, bulging, pain or for any swelling.
Hernia can happen to anyone, of all ages and even though it is not life threatening, do not take it for granted. Visit your nearest doctor for the earliest inspection and treatment.