There’s nothing worse than being faced with a winter cold that leaves your nose so stuffed up that it’s hard to breathe. While there’s always the option of nasal decongestants, there’s also the solution of neti pots, little plastic teapot-looking devices with a long spout that help to flush out nasal passages with saline or saltwater.
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But now there’s some buzz out there saying that these more homeopathic ways of decongesting the nose could actually do more harm than good. According to the FDA, using neti pots incorrectly can increase your risk of nasal infections, especially if the device you’re using isn’t properly sterilized and cleaned after each use.
Not only is cleaning your neti pot the right way a good idea—don’t wash it with regular tap water, which can be a breeding ground for microorganisms that lead to infections—but you also want to make sure you’re using it the right way, too. Neti pots, while effective, are a little intimidating at first. Always make sure to lean over a sink and tilt your head to the side while breathing through your mouth to get the saline to drain through the nostril and loosen up whatever may be clogging it inside.
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