Nasal congestion, runny nose, and post nasal drip are common signs of common cold and sinusitis. These symptoms are not only discomforting, but cause embarrassing moments for the patients. A simple, yet effectual way to relieve congestion in the nose is by way of nasal irrigation. The neti pot technique is developed to clean the nose with the help of a simple device. Before we discuss how to use neti pots for colds, let's take a look at the basic information about this pot.
What are Neti Pots?
The neti pot method of cleaning blocked nasal passages was developed in India, some centuries ago. But, recently it has been promoted to the western countries for safe nasal irrigation. It follows the principle of gravitational flow and controlled breathing to get relief from a blocked nose. As the name goes, the neti pot is a small ceramic or plastic container that resembles a kettle. It has an opening or spout to deliver saline solution to the nose, and a small handle on the opposite end.
Many people use neti pots for sinus congestion and colds on a regular basis. Also, health specialists suggest the use of neti pots for nasal irrigation to candidates who have undergone sinus-related surgeries. The salt water aids in loosening the mucus and flushing of the nasal passages, thereby, preventing crust formation. Also, it helps the cilia in expelling allergens and mucus from the passages. Since the solution is purely saline without chemicals or preservatives, using neti pots for colds is considered to be a safe remedy.
How to Use Neti Pots?
As per proponents, use of neti pots for sinusitis and cold helps in combating congestion, headache, facial pain, and other associated symptoms. The customers also claim that after using neti pots, the need for nasal sprays and/or antibiotics is reduced greatly. Before trying it directly, you can go through the user directions provided in the product leaflet. The following are neti pot instructions which you should follow while using this pot.
- First make the neti pot solution by dissolving 1 teaspoon of salt in 16 ounces of lukewarm water.
- Fill the neti pot with a saline solution and be ready for flushing the nasal passages. Do not forget to keep a hand towel at a nearby place.
- In order to use neti pots, stand near the sink and tilt head at about 45 degrees. Position the nozzle of neti pot over top nostril and slowly pour the solution.
- As you do so, you will feel the flushing effect of saline water in the nasal cavity, after which it comes out of the other nostril.
- In case, saline water enters the throat, do not swallow it. Instead, you can spit it out as soon as possible. Blow your nose to remove any liquid that remains.
- Repeat the same steps for the other nostril. With a little practice, you can use it correctly without swallowing the saline water.
Nowadays, variations of traditional neti pots are available in the market, which are easy to use and provide better results. You might have already come across flexible neti pots and bulb syringes in pharmaceutical centers. These modern types allow users to control pressure application in the nasal passages. Before buying one and using it for cold, you can take advice from the physician about the safety of the device, the best brand and side effects (if any).
For people with chronic sinusitis, neti pots are used in conjunction with therapeutic sinus infection treatment. Side effects occur rarely, and are attributed to improper use of the nasal irrigation device. In short, use of neti pot is safe, provided you follow the correct instructions.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.