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Sinus Irrigation goes Mainstream
The popular yoga practice called Jalaneti is an effective treatment for sinus than medication. Jalaneti is the process of flushing the sinuses by pouring lukewarm saline water through the nasal passages.
By: Ravi Tumuluri
Speaking on the Oprah show last week, Dr. Oz wondered why anyone should not consider washing their nostrils for managing their sinus woes. He said that this treatment maybe more effective than medication.
"The [ear, nose and throat] doctors who are specialists in this area will often say this is a better treatment than a lot of the other drugs that we try to offer folks, because it mechanically cleans out the problem," he said.
What Dr. Oz says has been widely prevalent across several cultures and is in fact a popular yoga practice called Jala Neti. It is a process of flushing the sinuses by pouring lukewarm saline water through the nasal passages. Warm saline is gentle on the tissue and provides a thorough cleanse. Regular or cold water can be irritating to the sinuses.
Jala Neti is suitably performed with a special pot with a spout, popularly called a Neti Pot or Jalaneti Pot. It helps in managing the flushing process in a convenient manner.
Regular practice of Neti keeps the sinuses primed and ready to face the onslaught of viruses. It prevents mucus build up and is said to be effective in treating various respiratory disorders such as allergic rhinitis and hay fever. Proponents of Jala Neti are unanimous in their opinion that this practice should be regular, in some cases as regular as brushing the teeth
The Jala Neti Pot which is the tool to practice neti is widely available online and in drug stores. Though simple, the practice of Neti must be done after adequate instructions. A few websites explain this process in sufficient detail. “It is important that the learner is well aware of the right technique,” says Arun Goel of HealthAndYoga.com, a popular website supplying Jala Neti Pots. “An unpleasant experience can regretfully turn a person off from what is a hugely beneficial practice.”
Perhaps the time has come for us to try a treatment that seems perfectly logical and simple for our perennial sinus problems. “When you think about it … you wash your underarms. You have bidets. Why wouldn't you wash a pretty important part of your body, your sinuses, in the same fashion?" – Dr. Oz perhaps has a point.
It might actually be worth wile to have a Neti Pot sitting on your bath counter.