Nasal saline is a common home remedy that can relieve congestion in the nasal passages. This practice, which has its origins in the Ayurvedic tradition of medicine (Indian traditional medicine), helps clear mucus by preventing the crusting of secretions in the nasal passages that block the sinuses.
Have you ever heard the expressions sinus flush or nasal irrigation? All of this is a fancy way of expressing saline cleaning and can be done safely at home by anyone. The application of this simple home remedy, which has its origins in Indian traditional medicine, removes allergens, excess mucus, and other debris that causes congestion in the nose. It can also help moisturize mucous membranes.
Benefits of Inhaling Salt Water into the Nose
Salt is an easily accessible mineral, the most abundant and, therefore, the cheapest in the world. Salt, the main component of various home remedies such as bathing with salt water, soaking the feet in salt water, and saltwater gargling, can be used safely in the following conditions, including nasal congestion.
- It helps relieve congestion by loosening dried and thick mucus.
- Removes allergy triggers such as pollen, mold spores, or dirt, reducing inflammation if any
- May reduce postnasal drip symptoms.
- Provides relief by moisturizing the nasal lining
- Reduces swelling caused by irritants
- It reduces the symptoms caused by sinus infections and accelerates the healing process.
Is It Harmful To Wash Nose With Salt Water?
Cleaning the nose with salt water is generally considered safe. The mild and temporary effects you may experience are sneezing, feeling fullness in the ear, and a stinging sensation in the nose. On the other hand, you may want to ensure that the water you use does not contain harmful microscopic organisms. Because depending on the state of the water supply in your area, the water flowing from your fountain may be safe to drink (as stomach acid neutralizes some pests) but may not be safe to sniff.
The most severe risk is amoebae, such as naegleria fowleri, which can be found in tap water. This pest, also known as the brain-eating amoeba, can travel through the sinuses to the brain and cause a severe infection. However, cases of amoeba with serious consequences from snorting are rare, and you don’t have to worry about it.
However, the best option to stay on the safe side is to boil the water used for nasal cleansing. To neutralize the pests, it is enough to boil the water for one minute. After the boiling water has cooled, you can prepare your saltwater solution.
How to Prepare Salt Water for Opening Nose?
You can buy a neti pot from pharmacies to wash the inside of the nose. This equipment, which has a soft plastic container, is used by inserting the tip into the nostril and squeezing. As a result of squeezing the plastic cup, the water that goes with pressure from the nostril comes out from the other nostril.
While neti pots are affordable and easy to use, you can make a simple saline solution home for a similar effect. Add a teaspoon of salt to a glass of warm water (preferably boiled beforehand) and mix. Pull the salt water out of your nostrils and then blow your nose to clear the congested mucus. Buy a Neti Pot container from the drugstore for the best results without washing.
A Case Study About Washing the Nose with Salt Water
According to a 2015 study, regular nasal rinsing with salt water reduced symptoms in 35% of children and adults and improved quality of life by 30%. In the final reports of the study, “Large volume low-pressure nasal douche appeared to optimize the distribution and cleaning power of the irrigation solution in the nasal cavity.” (Source)
On the other hand, although the medical community agrees that nasal irrigation offers various benefits, they have not yet determined the best device to use and the amount of salt needed during the application.
Rinsing the nose with salt water seems like a safe method to help reduce symptoms of colds, chronic sinusitis, and allergies, including clearing congestion. However, if you experience pain and nosebleeds, stop blowing salt water into your nose. Also, if you have a serious infection, make an appointment with your doctor instead of dealing with home remedies such as saline solution.