The FDA warns that if they aren’t used properly, the user runs the risk of
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has warned that the use of neti pots and other nasal irrigation devices can be dangerous, if not used properly. They can lead to serious infection from contaminated dirty devices and normal tap water.
The problem isn’t the neti pot, it’s how it’s used.
Neti pots and electric nasal pulsating units are effective ways to remove bacteria, dust, allergens, and other pollutants from the nose and to add moisture to dry and swollen sinuses. By following the right protocol, they are very beneficial for those with chronic sinusitis, allergic rhinitis, the common cold, a sinus infection, and congested sinuses.
The user fills the neti pot or pulsating unit with a saline-based solution, leans over the sink, tilts their head sideways, and applies the tip into one nostril. The solution goes in one nostril and comes out the other.
The Purpose of Your Sinuses
Your sinuses (the mucous membranes) are delicate tissues, which have millions of microscopic cleaners called cilia to remove pollutants from your nasal passages. They sweep these pollutants down the back of your throat, where stomach acids do their job to eliminate them. While this is their core purpose, you don’t want to introduce disgusting bacteria and more pollutants directly to them.
What’s Lurking to Cause More Sinus Issues
- Tap Water – Straight from the tap there are microorganisms, including amoebas, bacteria, and protozoa hanging out in our drinking water. These live organisms can cause a serious infection if applied directly into the nose and nasal passages. While our stomach is equipped to handle most of these in our drinking supply, our sinuses are not.
- Dirty, Unclean Devices – Just think about all of the floating bacteria in our environment, not to mention fungus in damp areas. As soon as you’ve used your device, clean it with a natural anti-bacterial agent, dry it off, and then store it in a drawer.
Dr. Ivker’s Safe Nasal Irrigation Practices:
Use Only the Following Water Types for Nasal Irrigation:
- Distilled or sterile water (make sure the label clearly states one of these)
- Filtered water with a pore size of 1-micron maximum
- Boiled tap water. Boil for 4 to 5 minutes, let cool until it is warm to the touch. Don’t store this water for later use
- Clean with a natural antibacterial: Soap, Grapefruit Seed Extract, or Lemon
- Don’t allow the device to sit out on a counter to collect floating particles. Dry it and store it in a drawer for later use
- Use a saline that’s specially-formulated for nasal irrigation. You want a pure saline salt and the right ratio of saline so it is not too harsh on the sinuses. Remember, the purpose is to bring relief to dry, swollen, inflamed sinuses, you don’t want to introduce more issues
Dr. Ivker’s Recommended Products:
The Sinupulse Elite® is a pulsatile solution that has been found to be more effective than the neti pot. It safely removes the floating particles, allergens, dust, and bacteria from the sinuses and relieves dry, swollen sinuses. It also comes with (30) SinuAir Nasal Packets!
SinuAir® Easy Mix Saline Packets are naturally formulated powdered saline mix for use with both nasal spray and sinus irrigation. It’s designed to approximate the body’s natural salinity composition. We like SinuAir because it’s all natural, it dissolves better than other mixes, and it contains no preservatives, no iodine, or silica that might harm sensitive nasal membranes.
It’s especially effective in thinning nasal secretions and clearing stuffy, blocked nasal passages without burning or the stinging sensation that others can have.
With a sinus infection or a cold, one can add to the Sinupulse reservoir a few drops of pure tea tree oil, which is an antiviral, or Allimed Liquid, which is anti-viral, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial. One of these will last you many months, so cost per use is also minimal.