Jal Neti is a technique that has been in use for centuries. Yogis used this technique to stay disease-free and avoid any nasal blockages to interrupt their yogic practices. The technique uses alkaline water to clean the nasal path. In the modern world, Jal Neti is practiced to maintain nasal hygiene and keep respiratory diseases at bay.
In the past decade, Neti pots have become highly popular, especially with people who have sinus problems. This technique is also considered to relieve common cold symptoms and can be beneficial during the winter season. However, there are still some skeptics questioning the safety and effectiveness of the technique. In this article, we shall discuss the safety of this technique and how can you use it to improve your health.
What are Neti Pots?
Neti pots are nasal rinse devices that were intricately designed by Ayurvedic practitioners centuries ago. They look like tiny teapots with the spout that helps release the fluid to the nasal passage. Today, these pots come in several different shapes, sizes, and materials such as ceramic, plastic, and glass.
The pot is filled with a saltwater solution and then is used to pour the solution into one nostril allowing the liquid to exit from the other, clearing the nasal passage.
How Does a Neti Pot Work?
With a Neti pot, you pour a saline solution into your nasal passage that helps clear the build-up of mucus, toxins, and allergens trapped in the passage. Usage of saline water is essential as it prevents irritation in the nasal passage .
Benefits of Jal Neti and Neti Pots
The biggest advantage of practicing Jal Neti is that clears the respiratory passage, improves breathing, and relieves nasal congestion without depending on over-the-counter medications. Daily practice of Jal Neti can also help maintain nasal and respiratory hygiene. The practice can be beneficial for asthmatics as it can make breathing easier. It can also alleviate upper respiratory problems such as sore throats, tonsils, dry coughs, etc
Using Neti Pots the Right Way
Jal Neti and using Neti pots can be extremely beneficial when done in the right manner. There are certain things that you must be taken care of in why practicing Jal Neti and making the practice safe, as the incorrect use of Neti pots may cause discomfort. Here’s how to safely perform the Jal Neti and are a few things that you need to take care of:
- Lean over a sink and tilt your head sideways. If you’re doing it at a place where a sink is unavailable, you can simply place a pan on the ground)
- Insert the spout of the saline-filled Neti pot in the upper nostril and let the liquid exit from the lower nostril
- Keep breathing through your mouth during the process
- Clear your nostrils and repeat the procedure on the other side
It is essential to clean the pot after each use as salt can build up in certain parts of the device and hamper the solution used next time leading to various problems.
Do not share your Neti pots with others for hygiene reasons.
In case you’re making your saltwater solution at home, make sure that you do not use cold water, especially if you’re irrigating your nasal passage after sinus surgery. Use boiled water after cooling it to room temperature. Do not use tap water directly either.
If you’re buying a saline solution ensure that the label specifies that the water used is distilled or sterile.
The therapy must be performed only 1 to 3 times a week. Exceeding the recommended usage can cause health problems. If you have discomforts that are not relieved after multiple practices of Jal Neti, you must seek medical assistance.
Overuse of Neti pots may also be detrimental to overall health, therefore it is suggested to replace the pots every 2-3 months, especially if you are a regular user.
Children below the age of 2 must not be made to practice Jal Neti. However, children aged above 2 may benefit from the procedure if done right. Doctor recommendation is advised in cases where children may need to use Neti pots.
Using Neti pots is mostly safe and beneficial. If done right with all the precautions, you can highly benefit from it. The chances of serious problems are extremely rare .
This article is reviewed by Dr. Ashwini Konnur