The much hyped treatment for sinusitis, the neti pot, seems to be getting only more popular with each passing day. What with sinusitis being one of the most commonly inflicted chronic physical ailment that can affect people anywhere and any age, looking for alternate, natural remedies has been a thing. And using a neti pot for sinus definitely seems to be the answer to this plaguing health issue.
Just how do we use a neti pot for sinus infections? How safe is it? Here is an elaborate discussion on all the doubts that arise on this issue. So go on and give it a read before you actually try out this apparent magical remedy for sinusitis.
Table of Contents
- 1 What is Sinusitis?
- 2 What is a Neti Pot?
- 3 Does a Neti Pot Really Work for Rhinosinusitis ?
- 4 Using the Neti Pot for Sinusitis
- 5 Advantages of Using a Neti Pot Over Regular Medication for Sinus Problems
- 6 Precautions that You Should Take While Using Neti Pot
- 7 How Often Do We Use a Neti Pot for Sinusitis?
What is Sinusitis?
Sinusitis is an inflammation of the walls of the nasal passages. This inflammation could be caused by many triggers – sometimes bacteria, sometimes allergies, a change in the atmospheric pressure and some other reasons. The inflammation leads to the congestion of the sinuses (the nasal passages) and thereby causes a continuous pain around the nose reaching up to the head.
What is a Neti Pot?
A neti pot is a small pot that looks much like a tea pot. We use it for sinus through this procedure called as “nasal irrigation” where in we intervene with the flow of mucus in the nasal passages with a solution that we use in the neti pot. This solution usually contains salt and some other substances that help clear up the nasal passages and clean them.
Does a Neti Pot Really Work for Rhinosinusitis ?
Although we are not attending the triggers, using neti pot for sinusitis is highly beneficial as it reduces the blocks in the nasal passages and thereby it reduces the pain that it causes. Upon periodic use, nasal irrigation can also lead to a reduction in the inflammation as the solution that we use can remove the triggers that cause sinusitis by eliminating them. It is therefore one of the most effective ways to treat sinusitis as it boosts the natural healing mechanism of the sinuses.
In short, this is what happens when you use neti pot for sinusitis.
- Clears the sinuses that are congested.
- Removes the triggers that caused sinus problems and sinus infections.
- Heals cold and sore throat that are sometimes caused with sinusitis.
- Helps with snoring problems
- Works on sinus inflammation caused by steroid usage or pregnancy.
Using the Neti Pot for Sinusitis
Once you have got your neti pot home, there are two major steps involved in using it for nasal irrigation.
- Making your neti pot solution
- Using it for nasal irrigation
Making the Neti Pot Solution
A neti pot solution is to be made very carefully with the guidelines kept in mind as the water goes deep into the nasal sinuses. The water that you use for neti pot should belong to these categories.
- You should preferably use ‘distilled water’ that you usually get in any store in your locality.
- If distilled water is not available, using tap water or filter water can be allowed but only when it has been boiled for about 10 minutes within a few hours after the boiling.
- These days, there is a sinus-rinse water that is available in some drug stores. Using that can definitely be the best means.
The next step is to make the neti pot solution with this water. Adding salt and a pinch of baking soda to the water that belongs to one of the above categories is all that you need to do. Here is a measure of salt, baking soda and water that you should use for this neti pot solution.
One cup of water + half teaspoon of clean, non-Iodized salt + a pinch of baking soda
These measures are similar to the water that runs through the sinuses of our body so that there is no alteration in the salt balance of the liquids of the nasal cavities while use a neti pot. Sometimes, you can an antibacterial essential oil (of a two or three drops) to work against a sinusitis infection.
Steps for Using a Neti Pot for Nasal Irrigation
Using a neti pot is an easy thing to do all by yourself. Here are the steps that you should follow.
Step 1 : Lean over a sink and tilt your head to an angle on one of your sides.
Step 2 : Place the tip of the neti pot into the nostril that is above the other nostril as you tilt the head and pour the solution into the nostril slowly.
Step 3 : Keep breathing through your mouth while you’re doing this.
Step 4 : As you do this, you will notice that in a few seconds, there is water that comes out of the lower nostril (ie., the nostril towards the side that your head is tilted).
Step 5 : Continue doing this for a few minutes.
Step 6 : After you’re done, recline to your normal position and exhale forcefully until the nasal passages are clear. Blow your nose if necessary.
Step 7 : A few minutes later, repeat the same procedure on the other nostril (ie., tilting your head to the opposite direction to that of the previous time).
Step 8 : With breaks, continue doing this until you feel that your nasal passages have cleared. Repeat it for not more than 3 to 4 times.
Advantages of Using a Neti Pot Over Regular Medication for Sinus Problems
There are many reasons that using a neti pot for sinus problems can be a lot more beneficial than using the regular prescription medication. Although in severe cases, you might need both, eventually you will lose the need to depend on the medication at all, upon regular use of neti pot.
- For starters, it is absolutely safe for use and does not have any side effects that sinus meds usually have.
- Sinusitis is a chronic problem and using medication can be a bit difficult each time you get sinus. A neti pot is a simple and effective remedy that can work almost instantly giving you a relief.
- Pregnancy women are usually the most commonly affected by sinusitis and it becomes difficult for them to continuously take anti-sinus medication. Using a neti pot for sinusitis is therefore one of the most easy ways to heal.
- Using a neti pot regularly can also work against other nasal cavity related diseases like ‘snoring’ or ‘nose bleeds’. Sometimes these conditions come along with sinusitis. Either ways, they can be healed easily with neti pot.
- Sinusitis causes you to stop tasting and smelling things like you would previously. This can be relived to a great extent with the help of a neti pot. And that sure is a relief you would love!
- Using a neti pot on a regular basis is an easy way to keep seasonal allergies and the continuous sneezing that sometimes results due this, at bay.
Precautions that You Should Take While Using Neti Pot
Using a neti pot is actually quite easy and gets easier upon regular use and practice. However, you could face some of these problems initially.
- You might have a feeling of ‘drowning’ or ‘not being able to breathe’ for the initial few times that you use it which makes it a little difficult to use. All you have to do is keep using it no matter how you feel and eventually it will become really easy for you to use. Patience is the key.
- It is really important that the water you use is absolutely clean and of the categories that we’ve listed out earlier in this article. Any chance of contamination of the water with microbes is risky.
- Keeping the neti pot clean is yet another pre-requisite before you use it for your sinuses as contamination could also be possible through the pot.
- It is recommended that a neti pot be used only by one person and not shared between two or more people as that, yet again, could lead to a possible spreading of infections.
How Often Do We Use a Neti Pot for Sinusitis?
Studies have proven that consistent usage of a neti pot in your nasal cavities can affect the natural healing ability of the walls of the nasal septa. So how often can the neti pot be used for safe and effective use?
Using the neti pot once a day is considered safe as per the recommendation of the “American journal of rhinology and allergy” and as per the FDA. This is however recommended only if you have a sinusitis problem which is chronic. Once you notice that the recurring headache has stopped, you can stop using the neti pot until the next time that it returns, when you should use it for a few days continuously again.It is recommended that you consult a physician before you go ahead and use a neti pot for sinusitis or if you already started using it and notice any adverse reactions.
Upon careful monitoring using neti pot for sinus problems can be a wonderful, holistic means to get yourself rid of them forever or atleast for a very long time!