What is nasal saline irrigation?

Nasal saline irrigation is a practice that involves flushing the nasal passages with a large volume of a saline solution. It is highly recommended that everybody with airborne allergies irrigates their nose at least once a day (but ideally twice) per day. If you have airborne allergies, irrigating once before going outside and once when you come home is extremely helpful to clear the nose of the allergen particles that are causing your symptoms. Numerous companies sell devices that can be used for nasal saline irrigation, such as the neti pot or the Neil Med irrigation bottle.

Nasal saline irrigation can cause an unusual sensation that might be uncomfortable at first. It should always be performed with a warmed solution that is intended for nasal irrigation and not with fresh water. If you are mixing your own solution, it is extremely important that you do NOT use tap water, as this could be contaminated with organisms. Instead, make sure you only use water that has been distilled, sterilized, or boiled. If you use boiled water, do not mix the solution or use the water until it has cooled down to room temperature.

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