My mother always kept Imodium in the house. For me, it is effective, way too effective. Just one pill binds up most any issue into the complete opposite problem, so I tended to radically different treatments, like eating coarse fiber to flush out whatever was bothering my system faster and get it over with.
A couple weeks ago, I got bit by a tick. Not even sure it was a deer tick, though the best course of action was to take it to a doc and let them decide. They wanted to send The Tick off to the lab for analysis, and give me the preventative antibiotics just in case. No big deal, I had a tick bite a couple years ago and went through the same thing. Except last time I wasn't already experiencing some chronic err... loose & frequent stool.
The antibiotics played havoc with my already upset system, giving me indigestion with each pill, even looser stool, and slowly taking away my appetite in general. Well, I took the last pill, and went to the grocery store for lunch, and the only thing that looked appetizing was dates and peanut butter. Now I know, why on earth would an intelligent person eat a high fiber food when their digestive system was already upset? Because I was calorie deficient but couldn't find food appetizing, that's why, and normally such foods bind me up for a short while and then take not terribly long to find their overly merry way out. This time however, I was to learn a very severe lesson in self care: DON'T RISK IT. The predictable bind-up occurred, then about 2 days of intense cramping and hourly bathroom visits. Even all through the night when my poor little digestive system normally gives me a break. The first day was not so bad because I was at work and stayed well on top of the rehydration with broth, poached eggs, and lemonade. I was fatigued from not having been asleep enough at night, but felt manageable after a long lunch including a nap in a quiet corner. But then I went home, leaving the support groceries at work, went to bed early without any extra nutrition or hydration, and I crashed hard from the lack of calories and dehydration. I started out just very cold, but once I started shivering I couldn't stop. It took me a bit to even be able to reach the phone beside me to call hubby on the other side of our soundproof house. Once I managed to clearly communicate to hubby that he better bring me sugar water NOW and not caffeinated soda either, I started to recover, but took about 20 hours of sleep (with a missed day of work and hourly hydration, carbohydrates, and further dehydration breaks) to start feeling human again. Yesterday we went out to dinner and I was able to eat half of my normal fare, including all of the simple starch (mashed potatoes, which I normally don't like but called me as one of the few low-fiber sides.) I even managed to make a late night snack of the leftovers and make it gone. (The best ribs in town will perk up anyone's appetite, and I don't care if you're not supposed to have fatty food in that condition, it never bothered me much and I needed my first real food in days.)
Back to the Imodium. A sane person would have taken the Imodium. I actually did on day 2 of this, when the uh... dermal side effects were becoming too much to ride out. It happened to be the last pill in the house and as I was contemplating putting a box on the grocery list, I had a "why are smart people so dumb" moment. Just because mother bought this stuff doesn't mean I should. It's horrible for me. There are other brands, there may be other active ingredients that work better for me. Egad, some are even liquids that can be dosed out in smaller units than one pill... So Pepto Bismol is getting a trial in this house. Granted I'm already on the mend, but a half dose seems to have a positive effect for 10 hours or so without side effects... (label directions allow 8 doses a day)
I have an appointment to look at the chronic issue in a few weeks. The doc is waiting for some test results to come back. Hopefully I'll mend enough over the weekend to not have to call Monday for a sooner appointment for the acute one. The last doc I saw for an acute issue thought I should ride it out a bit longer, that I was managing my hydration well enough to combat it, so why waste the appointment fee and lost work time if I have hydration back under control?