ZocdocAnswersDoes the Netty Pot work?

Question

Does the Netty Pot work?

I've heard a lot from some of my friends about using the Neti Pot is but I don't know - these people are also into ear candling and other stuff that's bunk. Is there actual clinical evidence that Neti Pots keep you healthy, or is this just a fad?

Answer

Like most things, it depends on what you're using it for. There is good evidence that rinsing the nasal mucosa with warm saline (or salt water) is useful at reducing the symptoms of chronic rhinosinusitis (such as swelling, runny nose, and other allergic symptoms). It is useful because it cleans the nose, moisturizes the nose, and improves the function of the cells that keep the nasal passages clean (ciliated cells that brush bacteria and mucus out of the deeper areas of the respiratory tract). Your friends have good evidence behind their use of the Neti Pot, as there was one study that studied the results of 8 other studies and found that nasal saline one to four times daily was effective at reducing symptoms of rhinosinusitis when performed alone or with other treatments. It should be performed prior to using intranasal medications, as the saline makes the treatments more effective and would rinse these medications out of the nasal passageway if used immediately after the application of the medication. While the Neti Pot (or any other method of rinsing the nasal passageway with warm saline) may help with your rhinosinusitis symptoms, it is important to seek medical direction if your symptoms are persistent or get worse with time. Other concerning symptoms would be a chronic blockage of just one side of your nose, repeated bloody noses, foul smell for a consistent period of time, or signs of infection such as fever, chills, or other problems. There might be other therapies that would be more effective at treating your nasal symptoms as well, and qualified advice could be valuable in this regard.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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