Sinus Infection Relief

Find out how to spot sinus infection symptoms and ease the pain—or even stop your next sinus infection before it gets started

Nasal Washing Sounds Gross, but It Stopped My Sinus Infections

Since I got my neti pot, I havent had a single sinus infection or even a bad cold.
After suffering through 10 years of sinus infections (and their accompanying face pain, clogged passages, and two to three rounds of antibiotics per infection), I was ready to try anything—even the all-natural neti pot that my doctor recommended. Instructions: Fill with warm water and add a smidgen of salt, then tilt head with left nostril over sink and pour mixture into right nostril; water mixture and a lot of snot will exit through the left side.

I soon started watering my nose like it was a geranium—and coughing like an old man. But after a few days, I was clearing out congestion before it had a chance to set up camp in my sinuses.

Docs are on board with nasal irrigation: University of Michigan researchers have found that its much more effective than saline sprays for limiting the severity and frequency of sinus problems. However, docs warn that making a habit of nasal rinsing when youre healthy might make you more vulnerable to infections.

Since I got my neti, I havent had a single sinus infection or even a bad cold. Downsides? A little after-use drainage (i.e., nose rain). But blowing your nose after each treatment limits sudden downpours.

This article was first published in Health magazine, September 2008.
Lead writer: Diane Mapes
Last Updated: January 15, 2009

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