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Saline Nasal Sprays – Do They Work?

nasal-sprayDo you suffer from a frequent runny or stuffy nose? Have you seen all of the saline nasal products for your nose available these days and wondered if they really work? The good news is that there is a lot of positive feedback and some research behind these products, and in fact, they can help relieve a lot of different symptoms, including allergies and stuffy noses caused by colds or other reasons.

In these days of endless medications for various symptoms, one of the things I like the most about saline sprays and rinses for your nose is that they are completely safe, and can be used indefinitely, and as many times as you need. It is comforting to think that something out there is both effective and safe.

Another positive thing about these products is that they are relatively inexpensive to purchase. If you are using something like a Neti Pot, once you purchase the initial product (which itself is usually under $20) then all you need are the packets to make the solution, which, again, are very inexpensive. Or, if you prefer to use a saline spray (not everyone is comfortable pouring water in one nostril and having it come out the other), then the cost is only a few dollars. My daughter tried the Neti Pot twice, and both times, she swallowed while pouring the water through (which you are not supposed to do) and she ended up with water coming into her mouth. After those 2 times, she refused to try it again. My older daughter uses the Neti Pot with no difficulties, but for the younger one, I can now only convince her to use the saline spray.

Back to the products, they are very effective in relieving congestion and also in helping relieve allergy symptoms. I know this from personal experience, as well as through hundreds of online reviews. If allergens are in your nasal passages, you can flush them out with these saline products. If you are congested (they don’t work as well if you are completely plugged up), somehow they help to unplug you as well. I’ve never liked the idea of giving my children medications that are addictive, and that is one reason why I purchased a Neti Pot (and subsequently the spray as well).

One more great thing about saline products for your nose is that they are safe for children who are too young to use medications, including young babies.

Besides the anecdotal evidence, research backs up the claims that saline nasal sprays and other products really do what they claim. According to WebMD.com, “Some studies support the use of saline solution (salt water) to restore moisture to dry nasal passages and sinuses and to lessen the inflammation of mucous membranes. Findings show that if saline irrigation is used regularly, it can help to thin mucus, decrease postnasal drip, and cleanse your nasal passages of bacteria.”

While some websites claim that you can make up your own saline solutions, for me, buying the prepackaged ones are cheap enough that I will buy them so I don’t have to worry about getting the concentrations just right. If you make them too strong or too weak, you could experience burning, or they might not work as well.

All in all, I highly recommend anyone who suffers from persistent or annoying nasal-related symptoms to give these products a try! Do they work for you? Share your experiences in the comments…

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