A Neti pot is a small vessel used to cleanse the sinus cavities. This process is thought to relieve congestion and reduce swollen membranes associated with colds and allergies. Many use a Neti pot on a daily basis, particularly when allergies flare up or during the cold and flu season. This article will explain how to prepare a Neti pot for use by mixing a cleansing solution with common ingredients found at home.
Things You'll Need
- Clean, 1-quart container
- Clean tap water, bottled water or distilled water
- Non-iodized salt (also known as pickling salt)
- Baking soda
- Neti pot or nasal syringe
Recipe for a Neti Pot
You can use tap water, bottled water or distilled water for your Neti pot recipe. If you use tap water, consider boiling it first to ensure that it is sterile. Place 8 oz. (1 cup) water in a clean Neti pot or nasal syringe.
Add 1/8 to 1/4 tsp. non-iodized salt to the water. Choose non-iodized salt over regular table salt because the latter includes additives that are not recommended in the Neti pot recipe. You can find non-iodized salt in most grocery stores. It is sometimes referred to as pickling salt. Some people also choose to use sea salt for this purpose.
Add 1/8 to 1/4 tsp. baking soda to your Neti pot solution. This ingredient adjusts the pH in your body and acts as a buffer for the salt water. Never substitute baking powder for baking soda, as baking powder will not provide the same function and could irritate the sinus cavities.
Mix the solution until the salt and baking soda are completely dissolved. If you make up more than one serving of your Neti pot solution, mix it each time before using to ensure that the sediment from the solid ingredients does not get into your sinus cavities. Keep your solution at room temperature until you are ready to use it. Some people find that heating the solution slightly in the microwave before using makes for a more comfortable nasal rinse. If you use the microwave to heat your Neti pot solution, shake it well before placing it in your Neti pot to prevent hot spots in the liquid; you only want to heat it to a slightly warm temperature.
Another option for a Neti pot recipe is to purchase packets of mixed solution that can simply be added to water. Packets are generally packaged in bulk and will provide instructions on how much water to add. Most will recommend using boiled or distilled water to the mix for best results. This method can be more convenient, but it also costs a bit more than a homemade Neti pot recipe.