Yes, Nasal Rinsing is for You — and Your Health
I live in Michigan, and this time of year has me feeling oh-so-miserable from sun up to sun down: watery eyes, constant sneezing, and congested sinuses. Seasonal allergies have plagued me for most of my adult life, and I used to think there was no remedy except for over-the-counter pharmaceuticals (hello, Claritin). The more holistic and in tune with my body I get, though, the less and less I want to flood it with anything unnatural. So, I have basically resorted to a “grin and bear it” mentality each and every springtime. Needless to say, I haven’t enjoyed this beautiful season for over the last decade, that is until I discovered the incredible, one-and-only Neti pot.
I was introduced to the Neti pot during my first yoga teacher training in India. Everyone had to stand outside in a circle and we were instructed to place the tip of a Genie-in-a-lamp looking device into one nostril, allowing the lukewarm saltwater to flush out the nasal cavity and flow out the other nostril. I stared on in disbelief, sure that this ancient cleansing process would be painful or leave me gasping for breath. Images of Lake Michigan waves crashing over my head and me breathing in what seemed like gallons of water at a time came rushing back. I wanted no part of this Neti business.
However, this wasn’t a matter of choice. I knew what I signed up for, and this was part of the deal. I was the one who made the conscious decision to be immersed in traditional Indian culture and to allow myself to be trained by some of the most incredible yogis in the world. If I chose to not participate in something so vital to their health and their way of life, I would not only be viewed as disrespectful, but I would also be cheating myself out of the experience. Little did I know, my courage would pay off dividends, and that little plastic pot would be the key to my being able to enjoy springtime again.
So I did it: I filled my Neti with purified saltwater, leaned over, and stuck the tip into my right nostril, letting the water move up into my brain (just kidding, but that’s what it felt like) and drain out the left. I blew my nose and repeated on the left side, and when I stood back up I can honestly say that I was able to breathe more clearly and more deeply than I had in my entire life. It was as if everything that was stuck inside my head was able to move out, out, out. I was hooked.
After that trip I vowed to make nasal rinsing pot a part of my daily routine, and it has been one of the best things I’ve ever done for myself. And it seems that especially during this time of year, just when I’m ready to grab that little pink tablet of relief, my Neti saves me from having to put anything unnatural inside this body of mine.
Other than seasonal allergy relief, there are multiple reasons to start using a Neti pot on a regular basis. Here are just a few:
· Improved, deeper breathing capacity (increase in prana, or life force energy)
· Decreased nighttime snoring
· Reduced sinus pressure and sinus headaches
· Reduced dryness in the nose
· Clears mucus from your nasal passageways
· Increased intuitive abilities by stimulating the Third Eye chakra
· Increased sense of taste and smell
· Prevention of colds and other respiratory illnesses
Disclaimer: I am not a medical doctor, nor am I giving medical advice. I am not suggesting that you use this method as an alternative to medication as I have. I am, however, suggesting that you keep an open mind and perhaps try something new to keep your body healthy and moving. Maybe, just maybe, you’ll find that the Neti pot is one of the best things to ever happen to your sinuses, your breathing, and your overall health. It’s worth a snot — er, I mean shot.
Melissa is an experienced yoga instructor, life coach, and somatic energy practitioner. For collaborations or private virtual healing sessions, contact email@example.com or subscribe to her free YouTube channel by clicking here.