Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Health Tips: Rhinitis and Sinusitis - Sinus Infections

Post-nasal drip and sinus infections have been the bane of my existence. The constant drip in the back of my throat, waking up choking in the middle of the night, and the hoarseness of my voice has led me to try every product imaginable out on the market. I've been on countless visits to the doctor, only to be told that I should take Benadryl and Sudafed, and to continue using my nasal spray and allergy pills.

Nothing was giving me relief, so I searched online for various ways that others have conquered their sinus issues. I came across this idea of nasal rinses. People intentionally shoot water up their nose? Won't they drown?

Those were all pre-conceived notions I had about nasal rinses. At first, I tried the Neilmed squeeze bottle, and I could not get the water to rinse out of my other nostril. The idea with nasal rinses is that you pour water into one side of your nostril, to "rinse" out your nasal passages. The water will then come out from your other nostril. After this first failed attempt, I knew the squeeze bottle was not right for me.

I went back to searching for options, and came across Neilmed's other product, the neti pot. The idea was simpler to execute - fill the neti pot with water, mix the water with a packet of their solution, and pour the water into one side, letting it flow out from the other.

I've tried the neti pot several times now, and I feel incredible! I noticed I don't have what I refer to as the "bad smell" that is constantly stuck inside my nose. I'm able to breathe easier and my sinuses feel clear. Best of all, I don't have a bad taste in the back of my throat the way I normally do. This is the first time I've ever felt this kind of relief, so I wanted to share my experience with you.

How to Use a Neti Pot:

1. Boil water and let the water cool down. DO NOT use water directly from the faucet without boiling it. This can be a safety hazard due to potential bacteria or other toxins in the water. Boiling the water will kill any harmful microorganisms.

2. Once the water is cooled, mix the water in the neti pot with a packet of the Neilmed solution.
8 oz. of water for 1 packet - there is an indicator on the neti pot for the 8 oz. mark.

3. Test the water to make sure it is not scalding hot. You don't want to burn or damage your nasal passages!

4. Lean forward, and tilt your head to the side. Pour the neti pot through one nostril and do not hold your breath. Let the water flow through to the other side.

If you happen to get the solution in your mouth, spit it out. There is no harm, but you don't want to swallow the solution.

5. Repeat on the other side, and you're done! 

The neti pot not only works for my post-nasal drip, I've also noticed a significant decrease in allergies.

To sum it up, I've included an amusing rendition of my nasal passages:

I'm no artist, but what I do know is that the neti pot helps me rinse away bacteria, pollutants, and other debris that become trapped in the nasal passages. Nasal rinses will help with the dreaded halitosis from trapped germs and nasal drips, and of course the sinus infections and allergy rhinitis.

This has been a tried and true method for me. It takes several tries to get the process right, but it is well worth the time and investment. I bought my neti pot from Target, which came with a 100 ct. of Neilmed solution packets.

One last mention: No, you will not drown from using the neti pot. The water rinses out from the other side of your nose!

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