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Using A Neti Pot To Clear Out Sinuses

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Q. When I was a child, my mother encouraged me to gargle with salt water when I had a sore throat. I just heard Dr. Oz on Oprah recommend salt water in a neti pot for improving sinus conditions. Are neti pots safe to use?

A. A neti pot looks a little like an Aladdin lamp. You put lukewarm salt water in this device, hold your head upside down and pour the solution in one nostril until it runs out the other. This ancient Indian practice helps wash out the nose and sinuses. It should be safe though you can accomplish much the same effect with a saline sinus rinse found in most pharmacies.
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I started using a neti pot two weeks ago and now my nose is all stopped up like I'm getting a cold. When I use it, the water does drain out the other nostril so I don't think that's the problem. Maybe I'm actually getting a cold, but I rarely get colds. What I'm wondering is, could using the neti pot wash away "friendly" bacteria that we keep in our nose, thus making me more susceptible to a cold?

Neti pots are amazing! It takes a couple of tries to get used to the sensation, but provides great relief for sinus sufferers, whether it's a cold, sinus infection, or just seasonal allergies. (It's most useful for me to wash after yardwork during my peak allergy season -- it lessens both the severity and duration of my sinus symptoms.)
Check with your local pharmacy -- you might have to ask about a "sinus wash" for them to understand what you're talking about.

I bought one of these from Walgreen's web site and was hopeful of its help after reading many reviews from other users. I found my nasal passages were dried out with daily use. I am going to try using it a few times a week and see if that helps.

For several years both my husband and I have used a purchased saline wash to spray in our noses before we retire. It sure helps with the stuffed sinuses/dry mouth. We both have fewer colds each year than is considered average. Great for opening the early morning stuffies also.

You do not turn your head upside down -- you turn it sideways (like looking at the ceiling) with your neck bent down towards your chest.

NeilMed sinus rinse kit is terrific.

For years I have snorted mild salt water for a drippy nose or sore throat. It is not a pleasant sensation, but it works -- reduces the drip and the sore throat and can actually stop an oncoming cold in its tracks if you do it at the first symptoms.

I heard about the neti pot on your show. I checked out a taped "how to" on youtube, then (not having a neti pot) tried the technique using a small teapot. What a pleasant change from snorting! Advice: tip your head moderately to one side over a sink, and pour slowly from the pot into the upside nostril. A small amount goes down your throat (good) but most simply comes out the other nostril into the sink.

It works beautifully. Be sure the salt water is WARM and no stronger than 1/2 tsp salt to a full cup of water. I make up a full cup at a time and microwave it a little to warm it as needed. But don't leave it around uncovered -- evaporation will make it too strong. Taste it before using it.

Final thought: our grandmother taught us the benefits of snorting salt water for colds, but she also put a pinch of baking soda in the water.

I wonder what benefit that might have? or not?

Nasal lavage is wonderful. I use it twice a day. When I get a cold, it completely eliminates congestion, and I think it can abort a cold if used regularly. I use a small teapot and warm saline solution, tilting my head forward and slightly to one side over the sink. It took a few tries to keep it from running down the back of my throat or having that painful feeling you get when you accidentally get water up your nose (or snort saline solution). When done correctly it feels great. It works much better than any decongestant, it's practically free, and has no side effects. According to Dr. Oz, it's important that the solution be mild (i tsp. salt to 1 c. water) and warm (body temp).

I was taught the nasal wash by a Hindu teacher. I use a small cup and mild salt water. I snort or suck it up one nostril while holding the other one closed. Then do the other side. When I am having sinus trouble -- drippy with allergies -- it's a little uncomfortable, but it clears things out, and I feel much better. I just have to remember to hang my head down so that all the water runs out. Otherwise I get a surprise drain a few minutes later -- that's messy.

After using the neti a couple of times for sinus congestion (which it did help), I developed positional vertigo in my right ear that didn't fade away for almost a month. I followed the illustrated positions carefully but somehow the water must have gotten into my ear. I haven't used the neti since because the vertigo was worse than the sinus problem.

My Yoga teacher taught me to use the Netipot years ago. It is wonderful as part of daily hygeine. No need to buy solutions, just use salt and water. The pot is better than just "snorting", though.

I started using a neti pot 5 years ago when my nose was so stopped up that I was using Afrin spray on an almost daily basis. I rarely have congestion now, not to mention the headaches that go along with it. What could be safer than normal saline?

Margot asked about the dash of soda her grandmother added to salt water for rinsing the nose. My ear, nose and throat doctor recommended the salt and soda combination. He said that he read that the little bit of soda helps the saline solution penetrate better.

My chiropractor introduced me to a nasal syringe instead of the neti pot. Much easier, and comfortable to use. Same saline solution. Push plunger slowly to avoid stinging sensation. Can be ordered on-line. Product name is Nasaline. Works great!!

You don't tip your head upside down, you bend over at the waist and tip your head to the side as if you are looking at the wall to your side. Also, you need to breathe out forcefully several times afterward to dry out any remaining water. (I do this and still, every now and then, I'll bend over later in the day and a little waterfall will stream out of my nose.) I do not use the neti all the time, just when I feel a cold coming on... and it seems to stop the cold at least half the time. For my chronic sinus problem, I find Astelin a little more effective and convenient.

When I first get a sore throat, I use the neti pot , then gargle the leftover salt water. Twice/day dilutes those bugs and stops a cold/flu dead!

My naturopath recommended using the neti pot for my rather constant sinus infections and allergies. It took some getting used to, but now I would not go a week without doing it at least every other day. I haven't had a cold in two years, and it has eliminated the sinus infections. I use sea salt and unprocessed baking soda since I am sensitive to chemicals and preservatives seem to be the worst.

Has anyone experienced worse congestion after using the neti pot? I just used one for the first time, and I am more congested than I was before using it. I also noticed that my ears were popping.

Is the iodine-free saline solution or saline and baking soda (to soften the water) solution used in nasal lavage OK for sodium senstive individuals, i.e., those with high blood pressure? I have seen nothing about alternative nasal washes to the salt or salt/soda mixtures.

I understand the sweeter Xylitol woks well as a natural anti-bacteria agent. it's also-sweet tasting in the back of the throat.

My 11-year old son has been using a neti pot for about five months for recurrent sinus infections. Since he started the neti pot, he hasn't had a sinus infection, but in the last month, he has had two ear infections. I am concerned that the neti pot may be the cause, since he has never before had an ear infection.

I tried using the netipot for the first time. It drained out of one nostril and dripped out of the other. Now I feel it continuing to drain down my throat and my ears are clogged. What am I doing wrong?

After I used the Neilmed Nasoflo Neti Pot, I bought half a dozen more for friends & family. Complete instructions are included. As others here state, one does NOT bend one's head down. One bends over a sink, and the head is facing to the right or left, sideways. As per the instructions that accompanied my Nasalflo Neti Pot, one keeps the mouth OPEN during the process, and then the water doesn't flow to the throat. OR worse, into the ear tubes.

After using the Neti Pot, you are supposed to GENTLY blow your nose, without squeezing either nostril -- squeezing the nostrils can send the liquid into the ear tubes, potentially resulting in ear infections.

AND remember ... do NOT hold your head upsidedown ---- that is NOT the way to use a neti pot.

One is NOT supposed to use iodized salt, and one should NEVER use tap water. It is supposed to be STERILE WATER.

"..... [rinsed his] sinuses with a salt water solution he made with tap water. That tap water may be linked to sinus infections with a germ called atypical mycobacterium, a first cousin of the tuberculosis germ.

Nurse practitioner Jennifer Walsh did the study.

"We found 24 patients with chronic sinusitis we think is due to this TB-like organism," she said.

Chlorine in tap water doesn't kill TB-like germs. Like tuberculosis, they can cause chronic infections, such as abscesses and bone infections.

I used the Neilmed Teapot for the first time this week. I live in GA and the pollen is terrible right now. I believe that it is helping. I do not have the bad drainage in the morning. I plan to continue, but caution; do not blow your nose hard directly after use.

I tried the Neti pot, but the water did not drain out my other nostril, it seemed to just go down the back of my throat. This was very unpleasant! I have a deviated septum, could that be why it didn't work right?

I used the neti pot and I too experienced more congestion afterward and my ears were popping too. Why would I have more congestion afterwards and popping ears?

Like a few other posters, I have noticed more post nasal drip and congestion since using the neti pot. Is there some reason for this? Maybe my sinuses are getting used to not being blocked? Can I expect this to stop soon, or should I stop using the neti pot?

I used it for the first time too, and feel more congested than before (can't breathe out of one nostril). I followed the instructions, it flowed out of both nostrils well, and I made sure to clear out all the excess water. Is there some reason I would feel more congested afterward and have popping ears? Does it not work for everyone?

Recently my doctor recommended Nasopure, a nasal irrigation system referred to as the modern neti. I have tried both the neti and Nasopure and have found Nasopure far superior. I don't have to bend and twist like the neti and Nasopure seems to give a much more effective flush because it uses self-controlled pressure instead of gravity. The angled Nasopure bottle allows for you to stand straight up while using it. Also, the salt packets that come with the product are much cheaper and seem more effective than that of the neti. I use one salt packet for about a week in the shower with Nasopure while the neti uses atleast one packet per use. Their website is very informative too and compares different nose washes on the market.

My dad and mom taught me to just use my finger and a light saline solution in tepid/warm water (1/4 cup or less in the bottom of a cup or container to rinse my nostrils till no longer slippery when having allergy/cold nasal symptoms. I also found it useful to wash my face, especially eyes with very warm water.

I appreciate hearing about the bacteria. It is one more reason I will remember to keep distilled water in my arsenal (stomach/diarrhea, sterile washes, and more). Then when my parents were in their early seventies they also discovered Xylitol. which is used in Denmark and other European countries I believe (discovered during WWII when no sugar was available and children using this (produced from tree bark, I think) had no cavities even though no dental care had been available for the duration of the war), to cure/prevent ear infections instead of antibiotics.

My parents brushed their teeth with it to prevent their gum disease along with the other cures mentioned that is used for. Apparently it makes the mucus membranes too slippery for bacteria to stick, therefore they are washed out before they can grow and do harm in the sinuses, or hence the ears.

I was feeling somewhat stuffy, so I thought I'd give my husband's neti pot a try, as I've heard good things about it. I tried it 3 separate times, carefully following all the directions. (breathing through my mouth throughout the process; exhaling through my nose afterwards to clear it, etc.) The problem is, my head feels so tight, like it's about to pop. And my ears are stuffy now, as well. I feel SO much worse than I did before. Did I do something wrong?

I too have worse congestion after using the neti pot. How come no one is answering these questions??

I tried it about 2 days ago and I find more congestion. Even got a "post nasal drip" during the night, which I never get.

This question is to those with the same problem of it being worse.
How long is it going to last till it returns to how it was?

I've tried the neti 3 times. BIG CAUTION: Use non-iodized salt when beginning. I tried the salt mixed with baking soda packet that came with the product and it burned like crazy.

Now, I use a very conservative 1/4 teaspoon salt per 2 cups BOILED water. Let the water cool until it's warm and then put the salt water into the pot. The water must be boiled to eliminate as much chlorine and impurities in the tap water as possible.

It feels good going through, and comes out the other nostril, or the mouth if the congestion is too bad. But, I too find that my congestion, overall, gets worse for about 8 to 12 hours afterwards. My ears plug, and I get a terrible sinus headache (which I never usually get).

My right nostril is slightly open, at the moment, but I think it's from the antihistimaine I took earlier, which also has a decongestant in it.

I have had postnasal drip down my face since I've started using the neti, as well. It burns the skin on my face, and wakes me up while i'm trying to sleep.

My overall layperson conclusion is it might work for some people who are quite healthy to begin with, who have only minor allergies. But, if you have moderate to severe allergies, or have cold/flu, or are congested TO BEGIN WITH, I wouldn't take that opportunity in time to "give it a try." Wait until you are better to try it. Best wishes to all who are suffering.

I agree - Nasopure is the system that works best for me. The neti was really cumbersome and leaky and messy...the Neilmed seemed to shoot the water up into my eyeballs. I use Nasopure every single day and just like my teeth feel fuzzy when I forget to brush, my nose feels gross when I forget to use Nasopure. With neti and Neilmed I got more drainage AFTER using it - maybe the water was getting trapped in areas that shouldn't get wet, and then draining out later..I don't know. I just know that I'm not irritated or drippy when I use the Nasopure bottle and packets.

I was having terrible sinus problems, waking up in the night unable to breathe. I tried several things that only made it worse. I found OCEAN Complete (at Wal Mart) This is a sterile saline solution in a pressurized can with a tip that seals to one side of your nose. After a couple of weeks I feel like a new person. I can actually breath. I have not had the problem with ears popping. Don't be surprised of all the junk that might come out after a few days.

I can relate to those who mention stuffy ears and worsened sinus conditions after using a neti pot or doing their own saline nasal wash. I have tried it several times and ended up with a headache; stuffy, crackling ears; puffy eyes; and dry, sore, inflamed sinuses...I felt worse! It almost makes me wonder if leaving well enough alone would be better (for some of us) and simply increasing fluid intake and decreasing intake of anything that has a diuretic (drying) effect, ie caffeine and alcohol.

It has a lot to do with WHY an individual feels the need to get a good "house-cleaning" of the sinuses. Could be exposure to external allergens or possibly related to consumption of foods which an individual is sensitive to...dairy and wheat being at the top of the list for some, such as me. It calls for experimentation to see what might be causing their sinus problems and go from there. I lean in the direction of letting the body heal itself and feeding it good food, steering clear of foods which one may be sensitive to, and drinking lots of water. Just FYI, I notice a huge improvement with my sinuses when I stay away from wheat.

To those who are experiencing problems, including ear congestion or ear infections:

I experienced similar problems in the following scenarios:

(1) when I tried the neti pot when I was already - but only slightly - congested. If the water has any trouble at ALL getting out the other nostril, it seems it will go into that ear.

(2) even if my nose is totally clear, it will start to go into my ear if I have my head at the wrong angle.

(3) if I blow my nose too hard after doing the rinse, the salt water will go into my ears.

When my head is at the right angle, and my nose is already clear, it seems to work great to prevent allergies (at least my milder ones, so far).

The moral is you may have to play around with getting the angle right in order to make sure all of the water flows out, none goes to your ears, and none stays in your nose. Don't blow your nose too hard. And don't do it when you're at all congested.

I have had my neti pot for a couple of years now, but forget to use it when I'm not experiencing any sinus symptoms. Last week, however, I got back to LA after spending three weeks in Sacramento, where it had been foggy and moist. I almost immediately developed a bad head cold, made far worse by the dry LA air and the dry air from the heater.

I was quite congested, and my sinuses and throat felt dry and painful. I began using my neti pot twice a day, and felt much better immediately. I used to have some of the problems that people have described with water going down my throat (although it has never gone in my ear), but I just experimented with different ways of holding my head, and found a way that was comfortable and easy for me, and that didn't go down my throat.

I think it just takes a bit of perseverance if it doesn't work for you the first time. Also, if I'm stuffed up, the water doesn't immediately flow through, but will feel blocked. When that happens, I stop using the neti, lean over the sink, and blow gently out of both nostrils. It's gross, but generally the warm salt water has already loosened up whatever was blocking my nasal passage, and I'm able to get it out and continue with the nasal irrigation (sometimes it takes a few tries).

I love the neti pot, and promote it to all of my friends and family, especially if they suffer from sinus problems or allergies. My cold is gone and I can breathe through my nose.

I'm at a loss to explain why people using the pot would experience worse congestion after using it. Perhaps it has to do with their technique, perhaps with the mixture that they used. I understand not wanting to continue if it initially seems to make things worse, but it's worth the effort of experimenting a little and finding the way that it does work for you.

I just used the neti pot for the first time last night to get rid of the remnants of a cold. Today, I had vertigo quite badly whenever I turned my head. I feel like there is residual fluid in my ears. I don't know if I dare to try again as I followed the directions the first time. Any suggestions?

I am, through experience, convinced of the ability of salt water to speed up/prevent colds/flu/sore throats. Two key things you need to know when applying the neti pot:

1. Be sure to use STERILE water (as a previous poster mentioned). I simply boil tap water and let it cool before using. Note, sterile water cannot be stored for too long.

2. Use PURE salt that is free of anticaking agents). i.e. normal table salt does not work. You can easily buy pure salt at most grocery stores. This may be another reason people's noses feel stuffy afterwards.

Good luck

I don't have the ear problems that others have mentioned, and I am guessing that has to do with individual physiology. I do find that the temperature matters, however. If I use luke warm water, I can get additional stuffiness. However, if I use water that is just a bit cooler than luke warm, I don't have that problem. I think that the cooler temperature causes the tissues to shrink slightly, which also helps drainage. I'd be curious to know whether anyone else has different response based on temperature.

When I received the Neti Pot I was so excited to use it after hearing all the wonderful stories, but I have used it two times and I feel awful! I was relieved that others on this site had the same symptoms. Should I cut back on the sodium? Or should I discontinue use?

I used the Neti pot for the first time yesterday after reading all of the instructions. It was really easy. I have been suffering for 3 weeks with the sound of fluid in my ears and pressure in my ears as well and pressure in my nasal passages and getting headaches from it. I saw an ear, nose and throat Dr. yesterday and he saw no fluid in my ears, did a hearing test and wants me back next week (as if I want to suffer another week with this) to do a balance test.

All I want is an allergy test for goodness sake. I know I am suffering from allergies, but they want my co-pays. So I decided to try the neti pot. I still have the crackling in my ears as before and the nasal pressure, oh, the doc did find blockages in both nasal passages and gave me nothing for this. I think the passages are swollen and causing pressure in my ears. I have been on sudafed since Saturday and Zyrtec for a week. I was told by the Dr. that did my hearing test that the Sudafed probably is clearing the fluid but they cant see to the inner ear.

I had no trouble with the Neti. I however did NOT sniff the remaining solution as some of you did. I blew my nose over the sink so the remaining fluid would come out my nose then blew into a tissue NOT holding either side. Also on that show The Doctors, one of them uses a Neti and he said to never use table salt because it is drying to the nasal passages. Also I breathe out my mouth the entire time I am pouring the water through. Don't just lean your head to the side either, lean it forward and to the side. The Neti comes with packets of solution and you can buy boxes of replacement packets as well. I am more frustrated that the doctors make you do all of these ridiculous tests instead of just allergy testing you.

I get like this every year at this time and mentioned that, it is just that this year has been much worse. My hubby used the Neti and it didn't flow freely for him, he has a deviated septum and the water just dripped out of his opposite nostril and he had it coming out of his mouth from his throat, I also think he wasn't constantly breathing out of his mouth.

I had to keep reminding him. My ears are bothering me, but from the allergies, not the neti pot. I recommended it to my parents. Dad has bad allergies as well. It can clear out all of the allergen particles.

I just used the Netty pot for the first time last night. About two hours after use, I laid down and immediately felt a lot of fluid drain into the inside of my ear which caused a ton of pressure and my ear began to have shooting pains! After calling several nurses and pharmacies and finding no help, I finally took ibuprophen and went to bed. I think a small amount drained in the middle of the night, but I can still feel the pressure/pain and I'm really concerned I may get an ear infection b/c of this thing!

I am sick and my ears were clogged before and are still clogged now...but worse than before I did the pot. Has anyone had this issue and had it resolved? Do you have any suggestions for draining my ear? Will it go away on it's own? Would love ANY help, I'm so concerned with the possibility of an infection or long term damage

first off, to the lady with the question about the baking soda, it is to make the salt less harsh on your sinuses. To the person with the son who has ear infections. he is probably using the netti pot too often, killing bad germs with the good, making him more susceptible. and you can use regular table salt, about 1/4 teaspoon for every seven ounces of water. Your nose will run more after using netti pot because now that sinuses are not clogged, the mucus needs somewhere to go. If this bothers you, try non-drowsy claritin or some sort of decongestant as it dries your sinuses and inhibits mucous production

For those who are more congested after using the neti pot, make sure you drain your nose properly after doing it - I've found instructions on doing on a few websites - just search for neti pot drying nose. Also here a link (if this works) If you don't do this you might feel more stuffed up afterwards.

Ear problems are probably the result of improper and vigorous nose blowing after using the neti pot. its important to GENTLY snort after using the net pot.. Do not put pressure on the side of your nose and blow hard. This can force the fluid back toward your ears.

I'm a strong advocate for nasal cleansing. If you read and look at the diagrams about the evolution of a nasal infection you will recall that the aerosols of the infected party enter the nose and are deposited in the warm moist incubation chamber of the nasal passage. Understanding this it is easy to see why washing that chamber is more important than washing your hands after being in a high contact area such as a theater, a church, a school room, a super market. Think of the number of cubic feet of air, loaded with contaminants you have been breathing during such exposure. Now you have a strong motivation to wash your nose moments after you have washed your hands... I keep a pint of a saline formula under my bathroom sink ready for immediate use.

My formula, perfected over years and with the input of several Health News Doctors is 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda (arm & Hammer). 1/4 tsp of Xylitol. The soda is to stop the salt burn. The water is RO purified, the container is the 8Oz Folgers instant coffee container. The lid of that container has deep sides and will contain a pool of rinse. I lean over the basin and snort and blow first on side then the other. I observe the mucus and fluid on the white basin to see the degree of congestion being discharged and the improving clarity with repeated snorts. . . it is amazing to see the contamination being cleared. . . With this philosophy of nasal hygiene i.e. "wash your nose when you have been in a contaminating environment" and the use of 2,000 IU of vitamin D3, I haven't had a cold or flu in 6 years. Nasal washing should be a preventative discipline rather than a cure. JWV

I was having terrible congestion from a cold so I purchased a neti pot yesterday. It felt really strange at first, but I'm getting used to it. Today, I hardly feel my cold at all. I'm breathing free and clear thanks to my neti pot. I love it! Much better and more effective than Sudafed.

After one use of using the neti pot and blowing my left ear popped and I had continuous pain in that ear for 3-4 days...used ice and heat continually...Dr. prescribed antibiotics...pain continued AND I eventually LOST my hearing. Went to ENT, who prescribed steroids...but said that I may never get my hearing back! He said my ear was 25 decibels less than my right. I've been on steroids for one day. I'm praying that this reverses the problem. I was so excited about using the Neti-pot after hearing so many positive comments. Now I'm afraid to even try it again!
Anyone else ever had this problem?

Two weeks ago today (5/1/09) I had endoscopic surgery to address my deviated septum and sinus blockages. During a post-op visit, my ENT doc gave me a NeilMed Sinus Wash (squeeze bottle type) starter kit. To be honest, I wasn't exactly excited to try it. However, after carefully reading the (very easy) directions, I gave it a shot. Wow! Amazing relief! Instead of the "reverse sneeze" I had expected, there was this gentle emptying and sense of freshness.

I am a camper, and once I've been on the trail for a few days, my body CRAVES a shower. Upon finally returning home, I make a bee-line for the bathroom. And once I step out of that shower, my whole body feels clean and renewed. And it's this same type of sensation of refreshment that I get -- except in 'nasal form' -- once I've used the Sinus Rinse. What a relief it offers! Hope you experience the same!

To those who have an issue with being more congested after using neti pot this is what I found.

I too was suffering from worse sinus pressure/congestion after using the neti pot and switched a few things up and found it worked AMAZING.

1) I was originally using tap water. I switched to bottled water and put it in the microwave for 5s.

2) The water I used was a pinch above lukewarm. For me, it felt WAY more comfortable, kind of like a hot bath.

3) I relaxed my nose more. I originally made it so I only breathed out of my mouth. Instead, i just relaxed. Let it drain itself as long as need be.

4)After letting my nose drain naturally I blew my nose VERY gently. After all the drainage that could come out without a hard blow I VERY gently snorted any remnants back up.

5) After GENTLY blowing and snorting, I sat and watched a movie or surfed the internet with a roll of tissue paper. Any extra drainage I just wiped away. I didn't blow at all.

After 30 minutes of attempting a nasal rinse this way I had to adjust my breathing. I can't remember how long it has been since I could breath with no obstructions it was hard to get used to for a day or two.

I hope this helps some of you.

I am extremely congested right now, having green nasal discharge so thick it just 'sits' at the top of my nose. It just drips slowly throughout the day. I just tried the netipot and I wasn't able to get it to flow to the other nostril.

I felt the water going up my right nostril, kept tilting my head to the left to help it pour that way, but the water seemed to 'pause' and go down the back of my throat. I tried it with the other nostril; water felt like it was going to drain out my ear so I immediately stopped. But when I blew out my nose after I had LOADS of nasal discharge; I was amazed this could all fit in my head. I think just the water touching the top of my nostrils was enough to dissolve a lot of mucus. It also makes the snot a lot less viscous so it can flow right out. So if you can't get it to pour out the other nostril, it's still worth a try because you will loosen up the gunk! I will try again to get it to flow through; I am not sure if the prob is with my technique, nasal shape (deviated septum) or congestion.

To Marge F.:
"Individuals typically blow their noses much harder than is necessary to clear them of mucous. Even in individuals with large noses, the distance from the tip of the nose to the beginning of the throat is less than four inches. It does not take a huge amount of effort (and certainly no noise) to clear those four inches even if it were completely full of mucous. ...[W]hen we blow our nose hard we get a reflex nasal congestion... Remember, a congested nose will ultimately cause a sinus infection." (Gailen D. Marshall, MD, 01/30/03)

Blowing, even relatively gently, pushes snot into the sinus cavities, where it can cause sinus headache or sinus infection. Blowing hard can cause middle ear infection. Blowing hard, especially with the nostrils blocked, can rupture an eardrum."

So the problem was not with the netipot per se, but with the blowing technique. It's scary you damaged your hearing though; I hope it was a temporary thing.

I use the netipot. The only time I find it ineffective is if I am actually sick or having bad allergies, which is rare since beginning use. However, when it does work it seems that my nostrils plug up alternately. Free and clear in the left and stuffy in the right, and then free and clear in the right and stuffy in the left. Any advice?

I tried the neti pot and would not recommend this to anyone. I used it twice. I woke up in the morning with an awful sinus headache and had it all day. The next night I used it and woke with a splitting sinus headache at 4:00 in the morning.

This headache continued all day. I then quit using it and still woke at 1:30 am with a headache. I resorted to 800 milligrams of motrin and a dose of sinus headache medicine. My headache has subsided but it is still there just very faint.

I think maybe it is on its way out but I have had a headache for 4 days now and I thank the neti pot. Right now it is a slight pain and my right cheek is swollen.

I cant stand another day. In my opinion: don't use the neti pot!! Also even meds did not relieve the pain after I used the neti took 4 days to ease. I recommend just using a saline in a pressure bottle. it is expensive $10.00 a bottle but it works and is gentle. It is called "SIMPLY SALINE" a sterile nasal mist.

I need help! I've been suffering from congested sinuses for months. I've tried using the neti pot and though I can get it to flow properly, the congestion actually gets worse. Just now I was able to breathe through one nostril, so I thought I'd rinse to try and clear up the other and get some sleep. But now my entire head feels congested and further rinsing is proving impossible. What is going on? It wasn't my first time using it, but these are the typical results. What can I do?

Thank you for any help you can give,

I have also gotten worse. I used it like 4 times so far and I am worse than when I started and I feel like I am really sick. I thought it was supposed to help?

I tried the neti pot once. A day or two after I had vertigo. I have never experienced it before and it was scary because it was rather violent. (vomiting was very severe). It lasted for days and I couldn't move, sit up, walk and I lost five pounds in a few days. I attribute my vertigo to my using the neti pot and I doubt I will ever try it again. Has anyone else had vertigo after using it?

I used the neti pot for the first time 5 days ago. I used boiled tap water and mixed it with the pre packaged sinus rinse they give you. I have never had a reaction to anything like that before. As soon as I used it I felt sort of weird but thought it would pass. About 12 hours later my sinuses were on fire like I had a chemical burn. Then it hit my chest...burning and trouble breathing. I went to the ER and the doctor told me I had a bad reaction to something in it. I have been on steroids and antibiotics and a nebulizer ever since. I'm getting better but still not 100%. I will never use it again. I have no idea what happened.

I've used a neti pot for a couple of years after seeing it on Oprah. It seems to have really cut down on seasonal nasal allergy symptoms. I don't get colds very often, but then I never did before rinsing. I'm mostly hooked on the clean, fresh healthy feeling!

I started with the packets that came with it until they ran out, and since then, I've used pickling salt from the grocery store. It is pure salt with no additives or iodine. I've always used tap water with no problems, but after reading above will consider boiling it first. I clean my pot regularly with hot soapy water.

I sometimes notice that I feel slightly congested for an hour or two after rinsing, but it does not persist. Overall, I definitely feel much LESS congested.

I don't remember whether I read this in the instructions that came with my pot or elsewhere, but the advice was to stay upright, sitting or standing, for several hours after rinsing, which of course rules out rinsing before bed. If I forget to rinse right after work, I skip it until the next morning. I wonder if laying down too soon might have contributed to some of the ear problems mentioned above.

I have to resist the temptation to blow my nose too hard after rinsing, particularly when I can tell there is some water still inside. I find that if I bend down, for example to tie my shoes, about 10 or 15 minutes after rinsing, any remaining solution will run out easily. I definitely think too much blowing could force solution into places where it can't drain on its own, and where mucus wouldn't normally go with the same blowing pressure because of its thickness. Blow only very gently, if at all!

I've been using the Neti pot for awhile and was happy with it. However, after a recent cold, I used it every day, and per recommendation of a pharmacist/nutritionist, bent my head down lower than usual to let the mixture into my sinus cavities. Several days later I woke up with severe vertigo and nausea (could not get out of bed for several hours).

The vertigo went away but a week later I developed a constant ringing in my ears (the doctor sees fluid in my middle ear). I'm on my second round of antibiotics for my sinus infection and have an infection in one ear and the fluid in the other. I had no idea the Neti pot might be to blame.

Hi all- I'm a person who suffers from many chronic conditions, allergies being one of my worst! I don't have a neti-pot-but tried the same thing with otc saline sprays-and the results were BAD! Doing this seemed to make my allergy symptoms a lot worse-and did it for a week or so-then I got an ear infection as well!

Lets remember the ear, nose, and throat are connected, and guess if you have any problems in these other areas, you should ask a doc before using-as flushing out the nose may cause bacteria to go into your ear, throat. Wish it was a quick, clean fix for me-but not so. It seems to work well for a lot of folks though. Wish I was one of them!

I also had this problem the first time I used it. Make sure to breathe through your mouth, and try not to swallow until you've removed the neti pot and have gently blown through your nostrils into the sink. Also, blow your nose through BOTH nostrils at the same time. (Either in the sink or using a kleenex.) I was keeping one nostril closed, and immediately felt the other ear pop. I think somehow some water got sucked into the ear tube. I'll keep trying until I get it right, because it did feel great.

Yes, it's key to NOT to blow your nose in a normal way afterwards! It's very tempting to just go for it, but DON'T. Gently snort, don't block either nostril. Leave them both open, and snort!

Then, you won't force water into your ears. Which makes you feel awful, and probably causes vertigo, too...

Also, I was grossed out by the idea of the pot, so I used the saline sprays for a few years, and finally went with a pot last week, mostly because it is cheaper! But, I was so surprised, the pot is TOTALLY BETTER. It's way more comfortable. The warm water is seriously better than cold, and gentle pouring, rather than spraying, is, well, more gentle.

Saline nasal washes don't have to be expensive. Just refill sanitized saline bottles with a homemade mixture of 1 cup boiled water to 1/2 tsp (or more as your tolerance builds up) sea salt.

I'm wondering the same thing... I started using a Neti Pot a couple of weeks ago and now have the worst sinus infection I've ever had. I'm going on my 4th day with a fever and I'm on antibiotics. You brought up a good point Jani.

The same thing happened to me. My sinuses were bothering me with sinus drainage so I got a neti pot. It made my nose stuffy and I felt like I was getting a cold so I stopped using it for a while. Then I tried a week or so later and the same thing happened. My head feels all stuffed up and I feel like I have a cold. Does anyone have an answer?

I was stuffed up and used the neti pot this morning, following all directions, and now I too have worse stuffiness, sinus headache, and ear-popping. I did the exercises suggested and they didn't help. I have a deviated septum and am wondering if this or other anatomical issues are the cause. I have used the neti pot before, when I was NOT stuffy, and it didn't bother me.

I think that I will not use it when I'm stuffy or sick (which is, obviously, the time you might want it..), but am guessing that it just doesn't work well for those of us with a certain anatomy.

For those feeling worse after using the neti: I have been trying nasal lavage off and on for over six years. Ugh! It has never worked for me, most commonly because of two reasons:
A. it will either drain just fine out of one side (so I know I'm doing it right) but the other side just fills up and doesn't drain, I have to drain it out the same nostril it went in. And on different attempts, it could be either side that is the one not draining that particular day, which makes me think the issue is not a deviated septum, but more of a thick blockage.
B. Even if I do get a trickle out of the second side, I ALWAYS feel worse afterward.

I have a lot of friends and family who swear by the neti, though, so I keep trying! I just found this today and thought it might be helpful to some. Going to give this a try, and will report back if I can get it to work.

I used the neti 2 days in a row about 2 weeks ago, and felt fine, other than a few mistakes with how to keep my head turned and water going down my throat.

With all the dryness this winter, I've been congested every morning and lately, my throat has felt dry and sore each morning. I tried the neti pot again yesterday, and the same thing happened to me as it did to others: a cold/sinus infection. I was considering using it again this morning to "wash out" whatever is in there causing this, but reading all of these posts is making me reconsider.

There's so many things to remember that I wonder if it's worth it to continue. I probably didn't have exactly the right temperature, or salt ratio. I may have blown too hard. But for real, I made it 33 years without a neti and survived. I think I will be fine!

I'm surprised to read about so many bad experiences using the neti pot. I've been using one for years. Perhaps it's true they're not for everyone, but the details do make a difference.

I found it awkward at first but I persisted until I found the right way to lean over the sink and tilt my head so the salt water runs from one nostril to the other and drains. Do remember to keep breathing through your mouth, to use comfortably lukewarm, not very warm, clean, pure water (no chlorine), and non-iodized salt (a plain, pure sea salt or kosher salt).

I find I don't like it as much with baking soda added, but some like it better. You can use 1 tsp salt per pint (2 cups) water, for a neutral salt level (basically matching the saltiness of your body fluids); if you increase the saltiness it could draw water from your nasal passages, which may or may not be a good thing, depending on your condition. (Likewise, less or no salt could increase the absorption of water by nasal tissues.)

I haven't tried xylitol in the solution yet but it is reputed to kill germs.
It's difficult to see how a clean saline solution could *cause* an infection, since salt is an anti-microbial. I'm not expert enough in physiology to know whether tilting the head the wrong way or blowing too forcefully could propel infected matter into the ears or sinuses, but that seems plausible.

I've personally had very good experiences with the neti pot but I don't use it daily, only when I'm coming down with a cold or sore throat. (Sometimes some of the salt water does hit the back of my throat, but I can't see what's wrong with that; it would just kill germs there and help to soothe inflamed tissues. Obviously you drink plain water to get rid of it.) I'm fighting my first cold in 2 years, and so far I'm keeping the worst at bay.

Something else that might help is putting a steaming face cloth over the nose and cheeks to loosen things up before using the neti pot. Also, in the shower I let warm water beat down on the nasal/sinus area and then blow into my hand and wash out the nasal passages with my fingers on a regular basis. I think that also helps to keep allergens, pollutants and germs from taking root or going further into the nose.

I'd be very wary about antibiotics for a sinus infection. Antibiotics use seems to short-circuit the immune system; kids who take them for ear infections, at least, get more recurring infections than kids who avoid antibiotics. Building up the immune system with good nutrition (cutting out sugar, soda, margarine and vegetable oils, and getting more vitamins A and D from butter, cod liver oil and quality supplements, etc.) and mechanically washing away infectious agents seems a safer course for most people.

Of course there are exceptions and different circumstances that might require a more aggressive response, but talk to your doctor about alternatives to antibiotics. I personally won't take antibiotics anymore unless it were a life-threatening situation, because they have caused me lifelong grief from systemic yeast infection. As well we now have a major public health crisis with MRSA and other drug-resistant bacteria proliferating, not just in hospitals but also out in the community. Especially don't take antibiotics unless you have an actual (tested for) bacterial infection, as they're useless against viruses.

I have tried using the neti pot half a dozen times now as I have a sinus cold and every time I use it, no solution comes out the other nostril. I am following directions very carefully and find the solution is going down the back of my throat.
What am I doing wrong?

I think it's difficult to explain in writing, easier if someone shows you. Maybe there's a YouTube on this? Still, I'll try!

If the solution is going down your throat, you're probably not leaning forward far enough. You should be leaning over the sink with your held tilted up to the side. Tilt it to the right (so it's level, right ear up, left ear down) to fill the right nostril, or to the left (left ear up, right ear down) to fill the left nostril. It may help to close the second nostril at first for a few seconds just until you feel the warm salt water enter the first nostril, then release the second nostril. If you feel it in your throat a little it doesn't matter, but if it's running down your throat, you must not be leaning forward enough.

Be sure you're tilting you head to the side, not up front-ways. (Lean over so your nose is pointing to the drain. Then, moving only your head, point your nose to the left wall or the right wall in turn.)

It helps if the water is sightly warm but really just about lukewarm. If it's too warm it will be painful.

I suppose it's possible for your sinuses to be so blocked that no liquid can get through, but that would mean you're breathing through your mouth all the time as no air could get through either.

Good luck. Apparently this doesn't work for everybody, but I find it very soothing and helpful.

Ha --I have you all beat. I ended up with a major nose bleed after a winter Neti. So bad I had to go to the ER. Never had a nose bleed before in my whole life. And I've had a blocked ear for 4 months now. Three doctors, one specialist, and no cures. Specialist says he may have to tube the eardrum to get drainage, but I should give it more time first.

I had crackling and popping for two months before the ear completely blocked, making it a total of 6 months dealing with this ear problem. I am 59 and never used a Neti before last year. My husband swears by it (it helps his seasonal allergies), but I'm sorry I ever used it. Like someone else here said, I was fine before without it. It's great for some, but not for all. Sayings like "Let sleeping dogs lie" and "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" haven't been around for years without a reason!

For those of you who have these symptoms. sinus headache, ears popping, you use the neti pot and all other sorts of sinus pills, salines etc. and still you have a headache. When you lay down at night can you hear stuff moving around in your sinuses... but when you blow very little to nothing comes out? I suffered with a sinus headache or an onset of sinus headache at least once a week for the last 10 years or so. Spent bookoo bucks on OTC meds, salines, etc. I am 1 month without even the slightest sign of a sinus headache!!

Many people have deviated septums, many to most when they blow their nose they either hold one nostril shut or they slightly squeeze the top of their nose, thus blocking passages. Stop doing that!!

Don't blow your nose period, except with your breath. It's awkward but it does the job. You won't get much out, but most likely there isn't much to come out. It's pressure making you feel like you have a headache. Maybe mucous too, but you've pushed it backwards instead of forward out of your nose. If you use a dose of neti pot or a saline spray, this is enough to make your mucous move freely.

Blocking your passage ways is bad but even worse if your septum is deviated. What do you think happens when you plug your good side and try to blow through the side that is partially blocked from a deviated septum? Yes, your pushing all that pressure into your sinuses, and ear canal, causing headaches and ear popping. Just don't blow your nose ever and there is a good chance you won't have another headache from sinuses.

I lost my hearing in one ear. Didn't know why. Had been using neti pot, off and on, for four years. Loss of hearing, replaced with loud screeching noises. My ENT said that my hearing would not come back. He prescribed an MRI for possible brain tumor. Didn't have a brain tumor. Then after two 1/2 weeks, hearing started coming back, slowly. ENT then changed his diagnosis and said that an ear infection caused a Meniere's episode (which I've never had), and that my hearing will come back.

Told me to have no sodium, and prescribed an antibiotic and diuretic to get fluid out of inner ear. He prescribed B vitamins. Am eating mainly vegetables, juicing, healthy protein sources, vitamin C. Now, six weeks later, hearing in that ear is approx. 85% better. Was able to work two days last week. Now this morning, I used the neti pot, and my ear is starting to bother me again. Went into this site, and I can see that I've been using the neti pot wrong, and I probably caused this whole thing on myself.

My cousin just had a similar situation. She had developed fluid in her ear. This was during the weekend so she decided to wait until Monday to go to the doctor, but it was too late. Meningitis set in and she died that night. I've heard doctors highly recommend the neti pots, but others do not. Be careful, if you experience something similar, don't wait to get help!!

I've only had positive experiences with the Neti Pot. I use it two ways: (1) head down and turned to the side; and (2) head way back. In either case, with my mouth closed, I hold my breath and try to flatten my tongue to the roof of my mouth. I never goes down my throat or in my ears. If I forget to do the tongue thing and it goes down my throat great. I figure it's cleaning and I spit it out.

I use regular box salt with a pinch of baking soda. The burning isn't that bad for me since my post nasal drip sometimes burns the hair out of my nose. When it's really bad, I use a little hydrogen peroxide too.

If I feel it bubbling, I know it's helping to kill the fever and germs. I stops my sinus infections in their tracks and helps remove that disgusting sinus smell. Please look online for nasal wash measurements. My mom taught us how to do this long before the Neti pot.

Another way to relieve sinus pressure is to fill a cup with warm salt water. Lean forward over your sink. Tip the cup just below your eye. Tip the cup up until your eye is immersed in the salt water and hold it there for a minute like you do when you open your eyes underwater. The ears, nose, eyes and throat,.. they're all connected. Do the same with the other eye, wait a few minutes blow your nose and spit out the very small amount of salt water. Your sinus headache and pressure will be relieved. I've had numerous cauterizations and months on Bactrum but these simple things work.

To those suffering from congestion afterwards. Using clean filtered water and non-iodized salt a must. I find it helpful to bring my water to a boil and let it cool, rather than body temp to begin. You just want to make sure salt is completely dissolved. Salt is a crystal, and can make your body retain water. A crystal slicing through your gentle tissue would probably lead to inflammation, as would chlorine or a lot of trace minerals in tap water.

I also find it helpful to drink a glass of water/cup of tea immediately following to encourage everything to drain properly.

I just used the neti pot for the first time today. I have had a week of severe sinus pain, fever, and deep upper tooth and jaw pain. I understand everyone's difficulties with procedure, but I thought I did ok. The problem is I still feel pressure. I just don't feel it is releasing the pressure even though I am getting complete drainage on both sides. I'm not sure if I want to try it again as I feel very dried out and have a bad toothache again. I look forward to reading anyone's suggestions.

I am also one who suffered severe congestion after using the neti pot for the first time. I have had severe sinus headaches for years and finally tried it. The morning after I did it for the first time my congestion started but I continued to do it daily. My symptoms only got worse until about day 4 or 5. By day 7 I was congestion free.

My only guess is that it took a while for my sinuses to release everything that was in there? No idea. But it did get better. I don't know if it made any difference or if it was just timing, but on day 3 I began to use distilled instead of filtered water, and the infused salt rinse ("infused with essential oils") instead of the standard. I also bumped it to twice a day. Its been 11 days and I now look forward to doing it because of the relief it gives me.

did not help one bit. waste of 20$.

I have allergy (running nose, itchy eyes) in December/January. I started using Neti Pot just yesterday on friend's recommendation. After first two uses in the afternoon, I didn't feel any effect. However, in the evening, my two noses become completely congested, and I have to breath through my mouth since 9 hours (so I could rarely go sleep). My nose are so stuffed that nothing goes through. I tried to use neti pot again, but water cannot go through at all. I also took two benadryl, but it did not help. I'm not sure if this is the side-effect of neti pot. Anybody has similar experience? Should I continue trying netipot?

My symptoms started with the clogging of one side of my nose each and every night for m-o-n-t-h-s. I'd flip sides constantly throughout the night to allow one side of my nose to drain, only for the side that was originally clear to clog up on me. Noticed around this time, too, a rhythmic 'wooshing' sound in one ear and that both ears were becoming super waxy for the first time in years. Occasionally I would even think I 'smelled' something funky up there?... guess I better not get too detailed here, huh?

Anyways, then this past week my sinuses went kaboom! I'm talking having to blow my nose so hard and so frequently (going through rolls of toilet paper) that the skin below my nose and on my upper lip started to turn red and dissolve and crack on me. I had some Ceftin left over from Lyme Disease treatment and decided to try that first, and though I did feel slight improvement after only one pill and knew it was doing something, I just couldn't stand the mucous anymore... the coughing, choking, snorting, and having to re-blow over and over again... there was no end to the mucous, even on Ceftin! For a while there, I wasn't even sure if I was dealing with an infection, only because most of my mucous was clear (but thick), with only an 'occasional' yellow-green glob (usually in the morning).

So that's when I decided to try my neti pot...

Not sure if I was doing it right, but holy cow! Only a couple of 'pours' using only warm tap water and baking soda, and it was like the dam to my sinuses broke open! a snot-slide, if you will! I did hear some popping in my ears, but if anything, it felt like they were finally draining, too.

Now if I hadn't taken the Ceftin first, would I have had such good results? Not sure, but it's definitely worth the test in the future! It definitely helped loosen up what Ceftin had started killing, and no more nose hairs with encrusted boogers at least!

I have suffered with severe allergies a good portion of my adult life. I tried the neti pot a few years back, with very bad results like many of those posted here.

The neti pot does not work for everybody. Those with moderate with severe allergies often times have anatomy problems with their sinus passages to begin with - deviated septums, narrow eustachian tubes (ears), etc ...

The frustrating part is many allergists/ENT really don't tell you this. They encourage the neti pot, which works for many, but really don't acknowledge that there are some of us that can't use it.

I tried, and tried again - several times - and each time I ended up worse. I finally found a Dr. that "sort of" admitted that it could be the physiology of my sinuses, ect was the problem.

Used the NetiPot and fluid has definitely clogged my ear. Been like this all day. Tried to fix the problem by using it again. Not good, made it worse. yes, I will stop. However, how do I clear my ear? It's so painful.

As I wrote back on April 14, 2010... I had been dealing with a clogged ear and some serious nose bleeds for 6 months. After 8 months had passed, and no doctor had helped me, I started a two-week regimen of colloidal silver (strength of 30 ppm, 1 1/2 tsp two to three times a day). Didn't notice much change, and almost gave up after 10 days, but stuck with it. On the morning of the 12th day, I awoke with a completely healed ear... fully open... and hearing restored. And haven't had a nose bleed since. Yippppeeeeee!! I would certainly give colloidal silver a try, since you probably won't be able to convince a doctor to give you antibiotics for this.

Please check out this video about the neti pot. It will answer all your questions about deviated septum, exact angle of head, ear clogging, type of salt and strength etc.

I have seasonal allergies and did not want to take medication for relief and pretty much suffered through those few months for years. Since I saw Dr. Oz on Oprah talking about using the neti pot as a natural relief, I've always wanted to try it, but hesitant about pouring water into my nasal passage. I looked at a few videos on youtube and found one where kids were using a squeeze bottle type instead of the pot. It looked quite simple. If a kid can use it, I can too. I bought one and have been using it for a week. Works wonders and glad I don't need to suffer through another allergy season! I can breathe so well after using it. I used the SinuCleanse squeeze bottle. Don't blow your nose too hard after use, only blow lightly. I read that the tissues or membranes are more sensitive after use, so you don't want to blow too hard.

If You have a neti pot ... and your skeptical if it works or not. Here's something a lot of you don't know, and I advise to do so once in a while..

first flush both sides..

then flush one side.. let a bit drain out. Now plug your nose.. now while standing up.. bend over slowly.. and let your head hang down.. about 5-10seconds.. then back up.. and over the sink unplug your nose.. and it will drain...

You've just filled a cavern in your nasal which NO ONE hardly knows about.. this is the area where MOST people think neti doesn't work, or those with sinusitis never clears up.. its the main membrane to all colds and bacterias.

Now... after 5 10 mins after neti potting.. .. take a tissue.. and bend over again.. and wait a few seconds.. voila! your nose is dripping..

You've just thoroughly used neti pot to its full potential !

just letting you all know.. I get a cold I neti pot twice a day.. before I sleep and when I wake.. and my colds instead of being typical 2-3 day symptoms.. stuffed nose, then drainage, then sore throat, then cough, then dry cough.. which is a 7-13 day hell... neti pot cuts those into one thing a day...

Drink lots of water!!!! and neti pot 2 times a day..

I love this thing. I used the NEILMED BOTTLE.. way easier. not the pot.

WL - To use netiBOTTLE.. If you swim... imagine swimming under water with your mouth open... your basically not letting water in, and with your nose not letting water go down the back of your throat.

backing just shutting the valves to your throat.. and relax.. it really simple.
After a while you'll get so good at it.. that you will in fact allow a tiny bit of the solution to get through to the back of your throat.. to spit it out.. this is where your really going to benefit from the solution in the very back of your throat. But still not allowing it to be swallowed.

I've never used something so real/simple/and safe. No pharma company is going to get you addicted to their other products.. this is natural and effective.
I don't even allow a microwave in my home, and my cell phone is always used with headphones, I'm a health cautious freak.. but lol I smoke. yep.. its not ONE cancer causing thing that gives you cancer... its the many exposures you do all day everyday.

smoking + microwave food + cell to your head + shampoo + plus swallowing small amounts of tooth paste +... etc etc.. ever here about those health nuts getting cancer.. " she got cancer?? she's a marathon runner??!!?!?".... well inhaling car exhaust everyday while jogging is worse than smoking..

lol got a lil too carried away.. all I'm saying is Netipot, Bottle is just salt and water.. you eat it every day.. so a teaspoon in flushing through sinuses isn't going to hurt anything.

1.) Squeeze bottles are 100000% better than Neti Pots! They really irrigate the sinus passageways UP inside the sinus cavities & are SOO much easier and simpler to use!

2.) Try drinking Apple Cider Vinegar (the brand with "the mother" in it most commonly found at health food stores - 2 teaspoons to 2 tablespoons in 8 ounces of water 3X a day). That alone can help clear congestion!

3.) Vitamin D (with the apple cider vinegar)

You can also google about irrigating sinuses with Manuka Honey. I personally find that my sinuses get worse (more irritated!) from using just salt in a neti pot - I must use the baking soda with it. Also, try irrigating with a few drops of Apple Cider Vinegar in a squeeze bottle if it doesn't sting too badly!

overuse such as multiple use a day can augment the mucous buildup. Remember, mucous traps bacteria and irritants. Possible overuse could have actually made you more susceptible to a virus or bacterial infection.

You might get a blood test for Celiac Disease. After several years of symptoms that did not go away my daughter found out this is what she has. After giving up gluten she is so much better. It is easier these days to find gluten free products too. We have HEB stores here and they have an aisle of gluten free products.

She had several chronic symptoms including sinus related and stomach problems. They have now almost completely gone away. There are so many things in your body that can be affected if you have this disease which can be diagnosed incorrectly by a doctor as something else.

Ask your doctor to give you the blood test. At least rule it out.

I think the packaged saline for neti pots has a bit of sodium bicarb (baking soda) in it.

I think I know why this happened. After you finished pouring the water, you blow your nose, right? The best way is to gently breathe out your nose a few times. DON'T plug either nostril, or pinch the bridge of your nose, or back-and-forth wiggle it while you blow.

This is what happened when you blew your nose - the mucous in there was all water-ed down. Normally it can't do this, but when it is thinned out from the water, it can "back fire" into your inner ear. This is where your balance sensors are (You have heard that the liquid in your inner ear controls your balance and movement control, right?)

If that water (which has snot and possible bacteria if you are sick) doesn't leave your ear, you could get an ear infection, which would make even more pressure on your balance sensors in your ears.

So, since I only play a doctor on TV, and I didn't watch you blow your nose, I can't be sure, but it sounds like this was a nose blowing problem, not a neti problem?

(I want to rocket-blast that stuff out of there too, immediately after)

Yes me too and I still have fluid in my ear. It's been 2 weeks! After snorting the water I was so congested, worse than ever. I had to take decongestants to be able to breathe at night and I am opposed to taking those. The cold left quickly and I feel great except for water in left ear. Can't get it out. Suggestions?

hey I read all your comments and I too was having an issue with ear/water getting into ear while tilting head using Neti POT. So I researched the Nasopure and all those squeeze bottle types and I noticed that when people use those, they are not hardly tilted at all. Something about Beroulle's principle, look it up.

So today, I tried using the Neti POT but not tilting at all, standing fairly straight, eyes straight ahead. It's a hell of a lot messier as you breathe through your mouth and the water runs right out of your nose and right past your mouth (and all over your face, bla bla bla) and you are relying on gravity to push the water all up in there. But the big time BONUS was that it seems when you do it that way, the water doesn't get anywhere near the ear cavity. I had no earache or sensation of water having gone all way up into the ear or sinuses!!!!! Try using the Neti Pot like the squeeze bottle type of nasal irrigators!!!!

I have tried the netti pots and their good but I like the plastic bottle where I squeeze it, I like the abilitiy to adust the pressure.

I used the Neti Pot for my allergies and it worked in lessening the reaction. I also got it in my ear and spent hours on the internet trying to figure out how to get the water in my ear from a Neti Pot out. I read somewhere that often it is mucus blocking it in the inner tubes.

So, I tried it again after trying everything else unsuccessfully. That time my nose wasn't as stuffed and the water went through instead of in my throat and ear. The water that was staying in my ear and causing extreme vertigo went away when I did the second cleansing.

After reading everyone's postings, I am definitely returning my neti pot! Clearly, to me, the possible bad reactions FAR outweigh any benefits.

I have a common cold and wanted to try a neti pot to see if it would clear stuffiness and congestion. I was hoping to prevent a possible sinus infection. I have never had a problem with sinus infections other than earlier this year I had a cold that lingered for two months and developed into a sinus infection. So last night I bought the nice brand at Whole Foods and the special salt, I boiled Brita-filtered water for at least several minutes. I waited for it to come to just warmer than room temperature.

As I was pouring, I tried to resist swallowing but a couple tiny trickles got down my throat. I'm sure this must be a common first time experience. When I was pouring the water in I started feeling pressure in my ears and after a few seconds of feeling this I stopped. I read the simple directions which said to stop and call a physician if you experience ear pressure when using. Well - gheesh!

I used it for 10 seconds and I already have to see a doctor as a result??? As a result my sinuses ended up getting clogged with water and I have way more sinus pressure, congestion, strange occasional clicking, and now pressure, a little popping, and aching in my ears too! I did blow my nose afterwards but I didn't do it especially hard or anything. I had all of these symptoms before I blew my nose. Why wasn't there more instruction and guidance???

I am hoping it will clear up and my body will just resolve the issue in the next day but after reading all your experiences I hope I haven't done something terrible to myself! I hope an infection, hearing loss, symptoms that take forever or never go away, even some people have known someone on this post knows someone who DIED from meningitis as a result from using their neti pot. I mean, wow!

Let me ask everyone a straightforward question: Don't you think these companies should give more warning and instruction with these kits???? If I knew these possible side effects I would have never tried it and gotten myself into this mess.

Maybe for people with severe problems that have tried all other avenues could try the neti pot - for some few people the benefits might outweigh the risks. But for the average person and for occasional or common use - the neti pot in my opinion is dangerous!

I've tried holding my breath while using this the netti pot and breathing. tried my mouth open and closed. tilted my head to the side.. no matter what, it goes down my throat.

Make sure you breath through your mouth or you will suffer : ear infections, ear popping, water down your throat and do not hold your head upside down.

Tried it several times exactly as many of the posts suggests is the proper way to do so and my congestion is consistently MUCH worse afterwards. I am not experiencing the popping ears, vertigo or anything else, just horrible congestion. I cannot breath through my nose AT ALL. No more Neti for me...

How long before you started to feel normal... Going through the same thing.

For all the people who experience cold symptoms after using a neti pot I have read this is due to not 'drying' the nose properly after irrigating. Drying is an equally important stage as if you leave moisture in the nose it can cause cold symptoms for a few days or more. This is a good video showing how to do it


I often get a blocked nose during or after neti pot and I use the Buteyko nose unblocking technique, Buteyko and neti pot are brilliant together!
This is an explanation of the technique but basically you gently hold your breathe and nod your head (I also wave my arms around to speed up the process..)

I will get stuffy afterwards if the water is not warm. If the water is at room temperature or cooler, it will stuff you up, give you a headache and make you feel like you've suddenly gotten a cold. Also, my ENT did say to NEVER use the neti pot if you are already too stuffed up from a cold - you could make things much worse. You need to do it at the start of your cold and keep going. Not wait until you can't breathe to do it.

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