How to Use a Neti Pot: 15 Steps (with Pictures)

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How to Use a Neti Pot: 15 Steps (with Pictures)
How to Use a Neti Pot: 15 Steps (with Pictures)

The neti pot, also known as neti pot or nasal sanitizer, is used to irrigate the nostrils, which is nothing more than cleaning the nasal cavity with a saline solution. It is not as well known in Western countries, but it is common in some parts of India and South Asia. It is possible to use a neti pot of saline solution every day to help remove mucus, bacteria and allergens from the nasal passages, but it is essential to follow the right cleaning techniques and use only sterile, distilled or boiled water.


Part 1 of 3: Cleaning the neti pot

Use the Neti Pot Step 1

Step 1. Read the manufacturer's instructions for how to clean the neti pot

Before using it, you should read all the instructions that come with it to find out which type of cleaning is most recommended. It is possible to clean most models with warm soapy water, but check the indication for yours.

Warning: Most of these items are not dishwasher safe, so only use the equipment if the manufacturer allows it.

Use the Neti Pot Step 2

Step 2. Wash the neti pot in hot soapy water before using it for the first time

Put a few drops of detergent into it and top up with hot water. Shake it and run soapy water all over the inside walls. Then empty it and rinse very well.

Rinse the neti pot six to seven times to ensure that no soap residue remains inside

Use the Neti Pot Step 3

Step 3. Let it dry naturally or use a paper towel

The neti pot must be completely dry before being used for the first time. Place it upside down on a clean towel or use a paper towel to dry it from the inside.

Do not use a dish towel to dry the item or leave it upside down, as in this position it can gather dust

Part 2 of 3: Making a Saline Solution

Use the Neti Pot Step 4

Step 1. Wash and dry your hands so as not to contaminate the nasal sanitizer

Leave them under warm running water and add about 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of liquid soap or rub them with a bar of soap for a few seconds to lather them. Rub the palm, the back, the area between the fingers and under the nails. Then rinse off all the soap in running water. Dry your hands thoroughly with a clean towel or paper towel.

Take about 20 seconds to wash your hands right. To find out if that time has passed, sing "Happy Birthday" twice

Use the Neti Pot Step 5

Step 2. Measure out about 1 liter of boiled or distilled water

To ensure that water is safe to put in the nose, it needs to be distilled, sterilized or boiled. Put the water in a clean glass container such as a pitcher or bowl.

You can buy mineral or distilled water in supermarkets or drugstores. Another option is to boil tap water for five minutes. Then turn off the heat and let it cool down to room temperature

Warning: Do not use untreated tap water as it may contain bacteria and amoebas that can cause illness in contact with the nasal passages.

Use the Neti Pot Step 6

Step 3. Place 2 teaspoons (10 g) of non-iodized salt in the water

It is possible to use plain salt or coarse salt, as long as it has no added iodine. Measure the amount to put in the water container.

  • Do not use table salt. The additives present in it can irritate the nose.
  • You can also buy a ready-made saline solution if you don't want to make one at home. Order saline solution at any pharmacy.
Use the Neti Pot Step 7

Step 4. Stir well until the salt is completely diluted and wait for the solution to cool

Use a clean metal spoon to stir the salt into the water until it is completely dissolved. If the solution looks clear and has cooled to room temperature, it is ready to use.

Cap the container if you don't plan to use the solution right away. However, try to use it within 24 hours. Discard any unused items within this period as bacteria may begin to proliferate

Part 3 of 3: Clearing the Airway

Use the Neti Pot Step 8

Step 1. Fill the neti pot with saline solution

The first step is to move the liquid from the container to the neti pot. Do this carefully to avoid waste and make sure the solution is not too hot to cause discomfort or burns.

Use the Neti Pot Step 9

Step 2. Lean over a sink keeping your neck straight and turn your head to one side

Lean the body over the sink at a 45-degree angle. Then tilt your head to one side, leaving one ear facing the sink. Keep your forehead at the same height as your chin or slightly forward.

  • Do not tilt your head too far so your chin is not above shoulder height.
  • Also, don't let your chin go too far below your forehead.
Use the Neti Pot Step 10

Step 3. Breathe through your mouth when doing the nasal wash

You will not be able to breathe through your nose while washing your sinuses with the sanitizer, so breathe through your mouth. Train a few times beforehand to get used to it.

Avoid talking or laughing during the process to avoid drowning

Use the Neti Pot Step 11

Step 4. Place half the contents of the neti pot in the nostril that is facing up

Press the neti pot nozzle against the nostril closing the air intake. With this kind of vacuum, the water will not be able to return through the same nostril that entered it. Lift the container so that the saline solution enters the nostril and exits the other. All of this may seem a little strange at first - it's like the moment when water enters your nose while you're swimming. Put half the contents into that first nostril.

  • The solution should run down the bottom nostril and into the sink. If water splashes on you, lower your body and move closer to the sink.
  • If the solution comes out of your mouth, lower your forehead a little, but keep it just above your chin.
Use the Neti Pot Step 12

Step 5. Repeat the procedure on the other side to clear the other nostril

Detach the nozzle from the first nostril as soon as you finish washing it. Turn your head to the opposite side and repeat the same step by step. Use the other half of the saline solution to wash the second nostril.

Tip: even if you only have one of your nostrils clogged, clean both sides. In this way, it is possible to get the most benefit from the correct use of the neti pot.

Use the Neti Pot Step 13

Step 6. Blow air through your nose to remove excess water

After cleaning your nostrils with the nasal sanitizer, keep your head above the sink and gently blow air through your nose without using your fingers to plug your nostrils. So the excess water comes out, along with some mucus.

Repeat until your nose stops running and you can breathe better again

Use the Neti Pot Step 14

Step 7. blow your nose gently using a tissue.

After the liquid finishes dripping from the nostrils into the sink, remove the rest of the water and wipe your nose thoroughly by blowing it in a tissue as usual. Apply light pressure to the opposite nostril while blowing your nose on the handkerchief and repeat the same on the other side. Do not cover both nostrils while blowing your nose.

Don't blow your blow too hard! Be gentle as you always do

Use the Neti Pot Step 15

Step 8. Clean the neti pot as soon as you finish using it

To prevent bacteria from building up in the neti pot, wash it thoroughly before putting it away. Use warm soapy water and let it air dry as in the first step.

Store the neti pot in a closet or drawer, protecting it from dust until the next use


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