If you have pet allergies and pet a dog, you wash your hands to remove the allergens. A neti pot serves a similar purpose for your nasal passages.
Choosing the right neti pot is mostly a matter of preference based on how you prefer to rinse. We prefer the gentle method of the Sattvic Path Ergonomically Designed Handmade Ceramic Neti Pot. Besides allowing you to control the flush, the Sattvic Path model features an attractive design.
What to know before you buy a neti pot
What is a neti pot?
A neti pot is a device that uses sterile, distilled or boiled-then-cooled water to flush your nasal passages. Neti pots help nasal allergies, colds, and other sinus issues.
How do you use a neti pot?
While different neti pots utilize slightly different approaches, the most common method involves using gravity to rinse your nasal passages. After filling your neti pot with sterile, distilled or boiled-then-cooled water, and adding a saline packet if desired, tilt your head forward and to the side – never back as that can cause choking.
While breathing only through your mouth, place the spout of the neti pot in the upper nostril and begin pouring. You will feel the water go up and around your nasal passages before it comes out of your lower nostril. When finished, wait a moment for your passages to drain fully, then repeat on the other side.
Dangers of using a neti pot
Anyone who has experienced trauma to the nose, eyes or brain, or who has had surgery in those areas should not use a neti pot before consulting with their doctor. Additionally, an individual with a completely clogged nose will not want to use a neti pot, either.
The sensation you feel when using a neti pot might be a bit strange, but the danger of using a neti pot has nothing to do with actually using it. The most important factor is having a clean bacteria-free neti pot and only using sterile, distilled or boiled-then-cooled water.
What to look for in a quality neti pot
Traditional, squeeze or electric irrigation methods
A neti pot uses three different irrigation methods to flush the nasal cavity: traditional irrigation, squeeze irrigation or electric irrigation.
Traditional irrigation: Traditional irrigation is the most gentle. As described in the preceding section, it flows gently in one nostril and out the other.
Squeeze irrigation: Squeeze irrigation is very similar to the traditional irrigation method, only you use a squeeze bottle or a large syringe to more forcibly flush your nasal passages. When using this method, you lean forward instead of to the side. Be careful about squeezing too hard as it can cause discomfort.
Electric irrigation: Electric irrigation uses a tiny battery-powered pump to flush your nasal cavity. This method usually involves placing a nozzle in each nostril, leaning slightly forward and pressing the power button. This method is also more forceful than the traditional irrigation method, but it is still relatively gentle and should not hurt. While there may be spillage at the end of the flush, this method tends to be the least messy.
It doesn’t take much water to perform a nasal cavity flush. However, a larger capacity neti pot will give you the option to perform a longer rinse if desired.
Comfortable spout size
For the neti pot to work without spilling, the spout needs to form a seal on your nostril. If the spout is too small, you will experience leaking, while a spout that is too large may just feel uncomfortable.
Ease of cleaning
The easier it is to clean your neti pot thoroughly, the safer it will be. Look for a model that either disassembles or has a wide opening that makes it easy to clean inside.
How much you can expect to spend on a neti pot
There isn’t much to a basic neti pot, so a budget model costs less than $15. If you prefer a ceramic model, expect to pay up to $30. Electric neti pots range from $80-$120.
Neti pot FAQ
Does it hurt to use a neti pot?
A. No, a neti pot should not cause any pain. If you experience burning, stop using until you find out the cause. That being said many individuals find that their first few neti pot treatments feel unnatural. Water flows in one nostril and out the other, so it may take a few tries before it feels comfortable.
How often should I use a neti pot?
A. If noticeable relief or improvement results from using the neti pot, you may use it as often as once each day. Long-term daily use is typically not advised because you will regularly wash away one of your body’s most important defenses against infection: mucus. When this happens, you may find yourself getting sick more often.
How do I clean my neti pot?
A. Since it’s vital to have a clean neti pot, it’s recommended you clean and dry your neti pot before and after every use. To accomplish this, use hot water and antibacterial soap or boiled water. After cleaning, dry thoroughly with a lint-free towel or let the neti pot air dry.
What’s the best neti pot to buy?
Top neti pot
What you need to know: This model is for the individual who wants a beautifully crafted and elegantly functioning neti pot.
What you’ll love: With its ergonomic design and handle-free operation, this neti pot is a customer favorite. This hand-crafted model is made in Europe, is lead-free and dishwasher safe.
What you should consider: A few individuals felt the spout was too large for comfort.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon.
Top neti pot for the money
What you need to know: An affordable, ceramic neti pot with features typically found in higher-priced models.
What you’ll love: The two included silicon nozzles allow for a more comfortable, spill-free experience. While the large opening allows for ease of cleaning by hand, this neti pot is dishwasher safe for your convenience.
What you should consider: This model is a bit heavier than other designs.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon.
Worth checking out
What you need to know: If you’re a fan of intriguing gadgets, this battery-powered neti pot will be your model of choice.
What you’ll love: Instead of one nozzle, this device has two – one for each nostril – along with an electric pump that actively flushes your nasal passages. It comes with 20 salt pods, a countertop caddy, a travel case and more.
What you should consider: This neti pot requires batteries and proprietary salt pods, which add to its long-term cost.
Allen Foster is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.
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