Cold-Season Salvation: The Neti Pot?

I admit: For years, I’ve been skeptical of the Neti pot—a tool for ‘nasal saline irrigation‘ that looks like a small teapot or genie lamp and uses a salt and water solution to flush out the passages of your nose. I have friends who swear by the Neti pot as a natural way to deal with sinus problems, allergies and colds, but the whole process has always seemed complicated and kinda gross to me.

This morning, however, I woke up with a scratchy throat, an achey head and a stuffy, itchy nose (hello, fall cold!). Hot tea and a hot shower are nothing doing. Could I find salvation in the dreaded Neti pot? Can you?

Read on for our overview of the Neti pot—what it is, how it works, why use it—accompanied by some lovely photos of Neti pot users. Yes, Neti potting it is probably something you’ll want to do in private …

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    • Deb

      I have been using jalaneti for twelve years. I no longer have terrible sinus problems, and I’ve only had colds two times (yes—in 12 years!), and that is because I got lazy and careless and forgot to clean my nose.

      During colds and flu season, I do one every morning and one at night. It takes as little as 8 hours for the rhino-virus to attach itself to the sinus membranes, so jalaneti night and day is your first line of defense.

      I prefer to use a baby bottle, with a hole drilled in the bottom and a hole cut across the nipple. The nipple is much softer than the hard pot spout and fits better in my nose. Try it! And keep your nose clean!

      • Elizabeth Nolan Brown


    • Danielle

      I swear by my neti pot. I use it every morning. I very rarely get a cold and when I do it’s not severe.

    • Briana Rognlin

      I’ve never used a neti pot, but these comments are making me want to try it out!

      My mom uses a water pik – does anyone else use those? Any major advantage over a neti pot? Discuss!

    • Brittney America

      ive used a netti pot several times and liked it. i agree with the water being luke warm (not hot or cold) and stay calm while you do it or it can feel like you sucked water up your nose in a pool or something! also dont use it if your nose it totally stuffed up bc it will hurt like hell.

      • Elizabeth Nolan Brown

        My nose was stuffed up, and it first it really hurt … but then I realized that’s b/c I was forgetting to breathe through my mouth …

    • SinupretSa

      Neti pots can do wonders to sinus problems and allergies that enter the nose. The only thing that may because of the dirty water that caused bacterial infection i 2011.