It tastes awful, but it works

No, I don’t mean Buckley’s. I’m referring to the NetiPot.

My typical tactic whenever I have a cold is to drug myself into oblivion with as many pharmaceuticals as I can get my hands on. Unfortunately, any cold medication that works is on the list of “things that will cause you to have a retarded flipper baby” so this year I’m SOL on my usual MO.

After a couple days of experimenting with the “if I take my vitamins, and lots of fluids, it won’t be that bad, it’s just a cold” tactic, I came to the conclusion that wishing really hard does not mean I won’t rub my nose raw with kleenex, and that it won’t feel like my head is so stuffed it should just pop off my body.

So I can’t do my usual. And I can’t do nothing. Desperate times clearly call for desperate measures.

Enter: Nasal Irrigation.

It really is just as gross as it sounds. You mix up a saline solution in a vessel that looks a little like a teapot, except instead of a normal spout, it’s got something that looks a bit like a buttplug. For your face.

You stick the plug/spout into one nostril, tilt your head to the side over a sink, and the solution runs through your sinuses and out your other nostril (and into your throat if you’re not careful or are overly enthusiastic – be ready, and I advise you spit, don’t swallow). It also helps to relax so you don’t choke.

It’s completely disgusting, but it works. And the science even seems legit.

I can tell you that for me, it got my totally, painfully blocked sinuses unclogged and moving again. And it’s always easier to function when you don’t feel like your eyeballs are trying to give birth to your brain.

So yes. NetiPot. Disgusting, but worth it. Not unlike having kids (or so I’m told – I’ll confirm that one soon enough).

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14 thoughts on “It tastes awful, but it works

  1. Deanna

    I fully agree that the NetiPot is absolutely awesome, and it really does work. The label really though should state “Warning: It is disgusting, and for the love of all that is gross, don’t inhale!”.

    Sorry to hear you have a cold – feel better soon!

  2. mark

    ironically, i discovered the amazing joy of this last year with a terrible sinus cold. these things are amazing, and worked much better than antibiotics. it reminded me of accidentally breathing in swimming pool water in a salt treated pool

  3. Renee

    I had to use one after my deviated septum operation (and after three days with medical-grade tampons stuffed up both nostrils…) and it was incredible. Incredibly GROSS. But very effective.

    I’ve used it a few times since when I get bad colds and I concur… it’s weird, but it’s good weird.

    Biology needs a new tagline: “It’s gross, but it’s awesome!”

  4. mark

    the instructions actually do state to inhale just a little bit to treat the “down the throat” mucus. truly a fantastic experience.

  5. Darren

    Full points for “things that will cause you to have a retarded flipper baby”. Also, I’m impressed by your restraint with the sentence “It also helps to relax so you don’t choke.”

    I’m struggling a bit with the scale of that thing. I think we all need an action shot.
    Darren´s last blog post ..Never forgetting anyone

  6. Jan Karlsbjerg

    Oy! What’s a guy gotta do to get a comment approved around here? Not include any helpful links?
    Jan Karlsbjerg´s last blog post ..draft — Quote of the Day – 3D in Movies

    peechie Reply:

    hmm… yah. i think if you’re a new or very rare commenter, including links lands you in purgatory until i check my queue. all good now though – and thanks for sharing a video for Darren (mostly so I didn’t have to go making one of my own)!

  7. shan

    We also swear by using a sinus rinse but we use the NeilMed squeeze bottle instead of the pot – it’s easier to use cause you don’t have to tilt your head sideways to get it to go, you just bend over the sink and squeeze. So gross and so useful.

  8. Nicole

    Tip: Tylenol sells little bottles of saline that you can squirt up your baby’s nose. It’s also gross (particularly since it has to be followed by sucking the stuff back out with a snot bulb) and it makes for a very angry baby, but one that can breathe and therefore sleep.

    peechie Reply:

    ooh, good to know. I’ll file that one away for a rainy day, for sure.

  9. Helen

    My boyfriend has sinuses that block easily, and it took me a full 6 months to convince him that this is something he might find useful, but once he did he was amazed that such a “drug free” solution was so effective. Spending a couple of days by the sea works as well, although it’s a bit pricier.

  10. Chris (@lyteforce)

    As with others, I was a complete skeptic before I tried it out years back but can’t imagine living without the regular NeilMed kit (the NetiPot just seemed odd at the time back when I was skeptical). It’s the first thing I grab anytime I sense congestion and the results are simply phenomenal. I’ve tried to convince others to do the same, but my description (I call it a nose hose) probably doesn’t help…
    Chris (@lyteforce)´s last blog post ..Never Been to Las Vegas

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