[personal profile] matthewdaly
I have two exciting facts to share with you.

First, I love my neti pot. I'm not even using fancy salt, just a big ol' canister of (noniodized) table salt. (Everyone says that potassium iodide is a major irritant, and I saw no reason to be skeptical on that point.) The final test was last night, when I had a horrible non-productive cough that became a very short-lived and productive expectoration after a single run-through with the neti pot. I asked a pharmacist a while back and he said that it was known to be non-harmful but that the claims of helpfulness were only anecdotal. Well, add me to the anecdote list.

Second, if you're going to use a neti pot, get used to the process BEFORE your sinuses are completely blocked. It works either way, but the experience is just a little more real when there's more mucus than water coming out. And I've never seen it in instructions anywhere, but I say switch nostrils from time to time because IME the process seems to clear out the "lower" Eustachian tube as well.

Date: 2010-04-08 12:57 am (UTC)
maize: (Default)
From: [personal profile] maize
I switch nostrils half-way through the process each time. (I do half a pot in one nostril, half a pot in the other.)

I read a study this spring that suggested that neti pots may increase your susceptibility to airport and respiratory illnesses because a certain amount of mucous in the sinuses acts as a first layer of defense, trapping incoming microbes before they can get anywhere harmful. Thinking back, I actually did get sick a lot more, and had some severe respiratory illnesses, during using my neti pot. The study suggested that using neti pots is still good as a symptomatic treatment used when things are bad -- during the worst of allergies or when you're sick and super congested -- but that you shouldn't just use it every day.

Since then I've stopped using it every day as a matter of course, but I keep it around to use when I feel that I need it. The incidence of my getting ill has, in fact, decreased.

Now, this is all EXTREMELY un-scientific and anecdotal, so you shouldn't take my experiences as proof, but I've decided to change how I use it.

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Matthew Daly

December 2012

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