So, I’ve been fighting a cold for the last several days, and using something to relieve my symptoms that it seems most people in the west still haven’t heard of: the Neti pot. It’s a device often used by radio DJs, TV reporters, singers, and many others to avoid sounding congested when they have to go on the air. Indeed, I first heard about it when it was described by an NPR reporter as a trade secret.
The Neti pot is a device for pouring a warm saline solution through your sinuses, cleansing them, flushing out crud and mucous. It’s an amazingly useful tool when you have a cold and are fighting serious congestion. It doesn’t make your cold go away, but it sure helps with the symptoms.
The Wikipedia article linked to above describes its use in detail. Rather than mess with spooning salt and baking soda separately, I usually just order a kit with a cheap plastic Neti pot and pre-prepared packets, which is convenient when you’re not feeling well. I do make sure to use distilled water, since tap water sometimes has microbes that are safe to drink but can be dangerous in your sinuses.
So the next time you have a cold, or if you have congestion from allergy problems, you might want to check it out. It’s an amazingly simple and useful device.