Is it OK to make my own neti pot solution? Or is it better to buy a commercial neti pot solution?
Answers from James T C Li, M.D., Ph.D.
A neti pot is a shallow container with a long, tapered spout. Neti pots are designed for rinsing or irrigating the nasal cavity. This irrigation helps relieve nasal congestion.
You don't need to buy a manufactured solution to use in a neti pot. A homemade solution works just as well. Use water that's labeled distilled or sterile to prevent infections that can occur with other types of water. You can use tap water if it's been boiled and cooled until lukewarm. Tap water that's been filtered using a filter with an absolute pore size of 1 micron or smaller also can be used to make irrigation solution.
Be sure to rinse the irrigation device after each use with similarly distilled, sterile, previously boiled and cooled, or filtered water and leave open to air-dry.
Feb. 18, 2014
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- Saline sinus rinse allergy treatment recipe. American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. http://www.aaaai.org/conditions-and-treatments/treatments/saline-sinus-rinse-recipe.aspx. Accessed Oct. 7, 2013.
- Kassel JC, et al. Saline nasal irrigation for acute upper respiratory tract infections. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD006821.pub2/abstract. Accessed Oct. 7, 2013.
- Dunn JD, et al. Efficacy of nasal irrigations and nebulizations for nasal symptom relief. Current Opinion in Otolaryngology & Head and Neck Surgery. 2013;21:248.
- Khianey R, et al. Is nasal saline irrigation all it is cracked up to be? Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. 2012;109:20.
- Naegleria fowleri - Primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/naegleria/general.html. Accessed Oct. 7, 2013.
- Is rinsing your sinuses safe? U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm316375.htm. Accessed Oct. 7, 2013.