By Bex, Supplements Buyer & The Naturalist Contributor
What’s that ceramic wonderland hanging out in the Sinus & Eye Support section by the supplements desk? The rainbow pottery assortment is a colorful tribe of neti pots! While they are neither teapots, nor genie lamps, neti pots can pretty much function as both for your nasal passages. If you find yourself complaining about seasonal allergies year round, if you constantly feel like you’re swimming underwater, or if you’ve yet to shake that stuffy, sniffly, cranky, leaky bout of the morning blaaaahs, you might want to try nasal irrigation!
PRAY TELL, WHAT IS NASAL IRRIGATION?
Nasal irrigation is a support system that stems from Ayurveda, the 2,000 to 5,000 year old traditional healing modality of Vedic India that was developed to assist one’s yogic path. This ancient practice involves flushing the nasal passages to support the release of mucous buildup, congestion and other potential ickiness that gets stuck in your nostrils and sinuses. Neti pot flushing assists the airways to promote deep and clear breathing, which is a major boon for yogis and non-yogis alike!
WHY IN THE WORLD WOULD I STICK THIS THING IN MY NOSE?
Our nostrils are the primary passage of air in our bodies - so pollutants, debris and other irritants can sneak into our system and get caught there, bringing on an onslaught of, well, snot. Other people that are particularly booger prone prefer flushing to picking because (just in case you didn’t know) fingers are dirty.
From an Ayurvedic perspective, autumn is the Vata time of increased wind and cold. As chill sets in, leaves fall, mold forms and ragweed goes nutso, so it turns out that now is a great time to start flushing and prep your schnoz for the frigid winter months.
OK, YOU’VE CONVINCED ME. HOW DO I DO THIS THING?
It miiiiight feel a little goofy to shove what feels like a piece of dishware up your nose to encourage that feeling you would get when you accidentally snort water through your nose while swimming - but I assure you, after a few practice sessions, you will be diving into the practice!
Your neti pot will come with instructions, but basically, you will be letting water travel from one nostril to the sinuses and back down the other nostril - then you will switch sides and repeat! Remember to always use lukewarm previously boiled, sterilized or diffused water as regular tap water can introduce some pretty funky critters into your nose.
WHAT COLOR NETI POT SHOULD I GET?
Now that’s totally up to you. We carry gorgeous Baraka and Coryell ceramic neti pots as well as an assortment of (BPA free) plastic neti pots. While they are all super-functional, some might fit into your bathroom aesthetic better than others.
Soon you will be a neti pot devotee! And if after a while your nasal passageways are so clear and moisturized that you decide the practice is no longer necessary, you can always use the ceramic vessel as a landing pad for your latest experiment sprouting seedlings!