Neti pots are small pots with spouts that are designed to clean your nasal passages. They are commonly used in India and other parts of Asia, and are traditionally made from copper, silver, or clay, although many neti pots are now made of ceramic, stainless steel, or plastic. Yoga practitioners have used neti pots for thousands of years.
How to Use a Neti Pot
Fill the neti pot with lukewarm water (this should be either distilled, sterile or previously boiled - see note below) and around half a teaspoon of pure salt. The water should not be too hot or too cold as this will cause discomfort. Bend forward over the sink and hold the neti pot in your right hand. Tilt your head to the left and place the pot against your right nostril so that it is sealed. While breathing through your open mouth, tilt the pot so that the water flows slowly into the right nostril and comes out of the left nostril. If necessary, adjust the angle of your head or the pot so that the water comes out of the other nostril, and does not go down the back of the throat. After using half of the pot of water on one nostril, repeat the
process for the other side.
Once you have performed the cleansing on both nostrils, you will need to perform kapal bhati (nasal cleansing through breathing). To perform this, bend forward while you are standing, close the left nostril, and gently blow the right nostril. Then close the right nostril and blow the left nostril. Repeat this process eleven times on each side. The process is supposed to be performed quickly. Once you have done this, wash your face, eyes, and nostrils with warm water.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Using a neti pot improperly can be very dangerous. Experts say you should not use tap water to irrigate your nose. Instead, use sterile, boilet or distilled water.
Benefits of Neti Pots
There are many benefits to come from using neti pots. These include:
- clearer vision
- cleansing and moisturising of the eyes
- improved sense of smell
- improved sense of taste
- deeper, more relaxed breathing
- a reduction in allergies
- removal of dust, pollen and other debris
- improved breathing
- elimination of post-nasal drip
- elimination of sinusitis or other chronic sinus infections
- moistening of dry nasal passages
- avoiding or reducing duration of the common cold
- general improvement to the health of your sinuses
- improved Yogic breathing practices
How often should Neti be performed?
A neti pot should be used daily, however, it can be used more often if you are suffering from a cold or problems with your sinuses, or living in an environment that is particularly dusty or polluted.