By Heather Legg
All over the news I am seeing how bad the allergy season will be this spring. With all the rain across the country, the flowers and plants are gearing up for a strong season, and though it may make for a pretty sight, for those suffering from seasonal allergies, they need to get ready.
Most people are aware of what allergy meds will work for them, whether prescription or over the counter, and while these are usually effective, they often come with unwanted side effects. When you think about the problem allergies, the problem comes form a foreign material invading the body. So while meds counteract the symptoms, they don’t really combat the source.
One way to help out with the actual invasion of pollen through the body is by using a neti pot. A neti pot using natural saline to rinse out the sinuses. And while everything is being rinsed out, the pollen will come out as well from the nose and sinuses, therefore eliminating its chances of getting into the body.
The use of a neti pot is fairly cut and dry: first, fill the neti pot with warm salt water or an over-the-counter saline nasal solution. Then tilt your head over the sink and place the spout of the neti pot in the upper nostril and gently pour in the water. As you pour, the salt water will flow through your nasal cavity and out the lower nostril. Repeat on the other side. Sure, it sounds weird, but it also sounds pretty cleansing. Remember how it feels to be in the ocean and have a wave hit and really clear out your sinuses?…
With proper use of a neti pot, there are really no side effects like the fogginess and drowsiness some people experience with allergy medication, and it is inexpensive. However, the over use of a neti pot has been linked to sinus trouble. Usually about three times a week is sufficient for helping allergy symptoms without overworking the sinuses. If side effects occur, like nasal irritation or nosebleeds, the water temperature and the salt concentration can be changed as can they frequency of the use of the neti pot to help alleviate these side effects.
Keeping the neti pot is really important, too. After each use, either wash the device thoroughly by hand, or put it in the dishwasher if it’s dishwasher-safe. Follow by drying the device completely each time. If bacteria grows in the neti pot, chances are it will make its way into your nose.
Some people use both the neti pot and allergy medicine together, some only one or the other. The think about the neti pot is it is quite safe, so it may be worth a try this beautiful, annoying allergy season.