We were trapped in the house during the Polar Vortex of January 2014. My family were happily playing video games, putting together a new puzzle, and everyone was calm and having fun. I was curled up on the couch in misery.
My issue? Nothing glamorous like the flu or pneumonia. I had plain old trapped gas. Due to chronic ulcerative colitis and a splenic flexure, if I eat the wrong things for long enough (or sometimes, just once), my abdomen goes into spasms and contractions. It’s not pretty, and it’s not fun. It hurts. Like, really hurts. Like, more discomfort than when I was in labor with my daughter (ok, that’s not fair, she popped out after 15 minutes).
Trust me, I’ve tried everything, even my beloved DigestZen essential oil, but nothing was really impacting the pain I was feeling. Since there was no way to get to the doctor (it was -30° F out!), I opened up the Walgreens app on my phone and clicked on Walgreens Pharmacy Chat. Pharmacy Chat is a free service Walgreens provides for Balance Rewards members (again, free to join!) that connects users with a pharmacist on-call 24/7. It’s perfect for when an unexpected illness emerges and it’s inconvenient to see the doctor.
“Paul O. Pharmacist” answered my message. Right off the bat he did tell me that ulcerative colitis is best treated by a medical doctor, which I know. I was just looking for something to tide me over.
He did recommend Gas-X (simethicone) as a temporary measure. I’ve tried that in the past without much success. I was looking for a homeopathic or natural remedy, though. Visiting the Walgreens Pharmacy in person, I found what I needed.
It was easy to find the “digestive’ aisle, and I saw the Gas-X (recommended by pharmacist), but also considered Align and Culturelle, two probiotic supplements. Finally, I decided on Bach Rescue Remedy lozenges. The rationale? Stomach cramps and pain often make it hard to sleep, and I hoped if I could just relax with a natural supplement, it might help.
So yeah, not exactly a digestive remedy, but often digestive distress is linked to anxiety – either the cause or the effect. In any case, it was just what I wanted.
This is why it’s important to manage my health. These moments are what I live for:
Have you tried the Walgreens Pharmacy Chat feature in the Walgreens app? Please leave your thoughts in the comments!