There are many signs of rectal bleeding.  There may be blood on the toilet paper, on the stool, or in the water.  The blood may be bright red or dark.

Painless bleeding is usually caused by hemorrhoids.

Painful bleeding may be an anal fissure (a cut near the anal opening).

Bright red blood on the toilet paper is a sign that the cause is closer to the anal opening or rectum.

Darker blood mixed with the stool may be from colon pathology.

Any rectal bleeding should be investigated by a training physician.

The causes range from benign to cancerous and needs to be diagnosed.