Whoa NETI!

This is a happy pot.As someone who has been known to vomit when faced with the sound of my husband blowing his nose and who swears they know what phlegm smells like and is sickened by the scent of it especially when it’s coming from my own body, I don’t know what possessed me to take my naturopath’s advice and buy a Neti pot with which to flush my nasal cavities.

Nasal cavities contain phlegm. Sometimes I gag just saying the word phlegm. I’ve certainly never been capable of coughing it up because then it would have to enter my mouth and my mouth is a dwelling place for taste buds and nerve endings, making it a completely unsuitable home for noxious goo. Granted, phlegm is 100% natural and possibly organic, depending on what I had to eat that day, but so is bird poop and I don’t want either of them splattered in my mouth.

But the doctor told me to get flushing with Neti so I got to the store and picked one up. When I got to the cash register, the Whole Foods clerk smiled and asked, “Is Oprah running her show about Neti pots again?”

“No.” I gave her a 3-snaps-GIRRRL!-I-belong-here smile. “My naturopath suggested it to me. Does Oprah do a show about Neti pots? I haven’t watched her in a while.”

“Oh. Yeah. This is the third one I’ve sold today and we usually sell a bunch right after they run that episode.”

I smugly tucked the pot into my fabric shopping bag and headed home to cleanse myself. I looked at the box. That girl flushing her sinuses looks so HAPPY, I thought, “This can’t be that bad.”

It can. Trust me, it can. You fill the pot with saline solution which you then pour into one nostril on your tilted head. The water then runs through all of your sinuses and, if the angle of your head isn’t precisely correct, into your mouth.

Have you ever tasted saline solution? It sort of tastes the way I imagine phlegm would taste, warm, salty, disgusting. And I know where it’s been. And I know what it’s supposed to be flushing out… or in to my mouth. And I cough and gag, compose myself, re-tilt my head and repeat.

Honk if you're reading this text.  Seriously please mention it in comments if you read this.
The drips in this image were NOT photoshopped (at least by me) Brownie’s honor.

I certainly wasn’t grinning as the goobers ran down MY face and the only reason I kept my mouth open was to let the solution run out.

Maybe I’ll try again in a few weeks… or years… or at some point when all of my taste buds and nerve endings have been fried in a terrible taste-bud-and-nerve-ending-frying accident.

This entry was posted in blick, poser in granolaville, save me from myself. Bookmark the permalink.

29 Responses to Whoa NETI!

  1. Mrs. F says:

    Aye aye aye! That is disgusting.

    I am cringing just reading about what happens when you pour the solution into your body and where it goes and ACK!!!! I might start gagging just thinking about it.

  2. HeatherJ says:

    Really???? Does the saline drip out the OTHER SIDE??

    What perverse person looked at their watering can one day and said, “Hmmm. What OTHER things can I do with this thing?” and why did they decide to pour it in their nose… and how many tries did it take before they figured out it would run out the other side… and did they say, “Cool!” when it did… and did they ever do this as a bizarre party trick… and did someone say, “Dude, you could, like, totally make some serious cash selling those things. Specially if you get Oprah to try it.”

    Think about the evolution of this product.

    I personally wonder if it was used as a torture device to drown a criminal. But it was no longer used because if the criminal’s head was tilted just right, and there was a smile on her face…. well, what kind of torture is that~!?!?!?

    Happy Cleansing :o)


  3. FarmWife says:

    Just seeing these things in the store makes me gag. Your post will keep me from eating for the next 4 hours!! Ugh!

  4. Bleck! I thought about trying this since I’m having trouble with one of my sinuses. Forget it now. Thanks for saving me the money!

  5. cchrissyy says:

    it’s not supposed to rinse down into your mouth- I’ve seen it on Oprah, the water runs out from the other nostril!

  6. Shalee says:

    Well, I got a nasal rinse last year too when I couldn’t breathe for a while. It worked, once I realized that I’m not supposed to plug the other side like you would with a nasal spray. Ei yi yi! That was just wrong and weird.

    But I like the nasal flush system know. Hopefully I won’t have to use it for a looooooooong time.

  7. Stephanie says:

    Wow. Wow. You are brave. And maybe crazy.

  8. Eve says:

    My Dad does this on a nightly basis. That’s all I have to say about that.

  9. kirida says:

    You need to get the picture of a young Reese Witherspoon demonstrating the neti pot. It’s classic.

  10. The things you will try for us… Bless you.

  11. Heffalump says:

    Okay…I have a neti pot…the jury is still out on it because I have the same gag reflex problems you do. One thing though, is if you close off the back of your throat, then the stuff won’t get in your mouth. Its kind of hard to explain, but it does help. Also if its going in your throat then your head is probably tilted too far back and it helps to lean forward too.
    I know its gross…but I get desperate due to allergies.

  12. Julie Q. says:

    Fur gross. I got into blogging just so I could practice spelling words like phlegm and diarrhea. but I’ll pass on the human showerhead treatment. I don’t care what Oprah says.

  13. RasJane says:

    I thought these were so gross and refused to use it for the longest time. Then last year, I got the worst crud. Dr said it would last about 1-2 MONTHS! I pulled out the neti and now it is my very best friend. I don’t have colds or flu that turn into the chest goo from Hades anymore. And dh rarely gets sinus infections anymore. So gross, yes, but far better than any alternative.
    And, yeah, tilt your head forward just a bit–it helps immensely.

  14. AMinTX says:

    Never posted before, but love your blog!! I bought the exact same neti-pot to help relieve my allergies here in Texas while pregnant and not wanting to take any meds. I say try again 🙂 It’s all about the head tilt, if you get the correct angle it works like magic I swear!!! Then you can breathe unemcumbered. I do agree that when the angle is not right, does not feel so good at all. Keep at it 🙂

  15. Angela says:

    Try different positions with your mouth closed. I’ve been irrigating my sinuses for 8 years now, most of that time with a squeeze bottle type thing, and always keep my mouth shut. But I also am basically holding my breath. Whatever it is I am doing keeps it from going down my throat or buggers in my mouth.

  16. Caryn says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I have a friend who swears by her Neti pot. In fact, she has two–one for home and a smaller one for when she’s on vacation. It’s like this religious experience for her. She’s always trying to get me to try one, and I know deep down that my experience will be exactly like you described. She insists that it won’t be, and others I have known claim that she’s right. But I just can’t. So the next time she bugs me about it, I’m pointing her here. There *are* worse things than clogged sinuses.

  17. Caryn says:

    P.S. The first time she mentioned it I truly thought she was kidding. I did not think that anyone would actually do that to themselves on purpose.

  18. I did a neti pot one last week too! That picture is TOTALLY the wrong angle. I’d DIE if I used it that way!

    Poor BFF!

    ps- When I went to Wild Oats (my version of Whole Foods) the other day and felt so healthy. Such a granola poser. I had just finished off a Dr. Pepper and Spicy Ckicken Burrito from Taco Bell. LOL!

  19. Sue says:

    Such an odd coincidence. Another friend just blogged about how much she loves her Neti pot, and I just – could not get the picture from your blog out of my mind. Now I have this really yucky mental picture of my friend and her Neti pot. BLECK!

  20. It looks like one of the those plant watering things, are you growing plants in your nose?
    My doctor recommended flushing after I had my sinus surgery and it worked o.k. but I used a baby nose flusher thing and as the water went in I’d say coca-cola to keep everything from going to the wrong places. But flushing the nose does help to keep it open, then I found those breath-rite strips. The good thing about the strips, if I forget to take it off and people ask if I broke my nose I say, “No my wife did it.” If you’re having allergy or sinus try the Tan strips because the clear ones just don’t stay on during sleep and a baby nose washer, not a something to water a house plant.

  21. jodi jean says:

    oh kathryn, sounds like you had a horrbile experience. everyone else who i’ve talked to loved neti! sorry!

    try doing it at a differnt angle, and forward a little

  22. Carmen says:

    I work with several people who swear by those things. I have had no need to try one myself, but they love them. Now my best advice, having worked as a nurse for 12 years, dealing with this disgusting snot day in and day out, is that you must distance yourself. Put a wall up in your mind so that you don’t focus on it, you are aware but not focused. I have really thick walls!

  23. Liz says:

    (I did see the text in the picture – HONK – but I’m at work reading your blog instead of industriously trying to get new clients, so I’m on IE 6. I don’t normally see the text under the pictures)

    salty snot in your mouth – nasty lol

  24. Jann says:

    I use a baby nasal syringe, and I am constantly telling people about it. My allergist (who FINALLY diagnosed my chronic sinus infection years ago) taught me how to do it. My mother, who also suffered from even worse sinus problems, got the same advice from her doctors. Neither of us have had any sinus problems, and have had much better allergy symptoms, since we started doing this. I think the neti pot seems awkward. I don’t have the gag problems you do, but if you can possibly get past it, I think you will get some real relief!!! There are also sinus irrigation systems for sale, but you don’t get the suction action with those. A simple baby syringe works really well. If you do it faithfully for awhile, then you can taper off and only have to subject yourself to it every few days or weekly. Sorry, but I think it feels great.

  25. Heidi says:

    I haven’t read your comments, but hey, don’t you go dissing the neti pot. My advice is, DON’T GIVE UP! The neti pot rules big time. It has saved me from numerous sinus infections.

  26. Bailey's Leaf says:

    I read about this on someone else’s blog. Kim’s Candor! It looked disgusting, but she swore that it was great. I’m sorry, but you won’t find me dumping saline in my nose with some funky looking pot. God bless y’all that can do it, but I would meet with your same success. Saline-y, boogery water running from my nose and mouth. I can’t even do saline nose drops! Ugh!

  27. Paige says:

    I have friends who swear by this. My one friend said it’s kind of refreshing to see something the size of a rodent come out of her nose. I just about threw up when she said that. And while I’d like my sinuses to not be—-oh, sinus-ey, I don’t know if I have the iron will to try that. Good for you for trying, oh brave one.

  28. Melissa says:

    Oh girl, you have to try the Neil Med Sinus Rinse kit. It’s like a squeeze bottle with a special tip, and you just lean forward over the sink (no leaning to the left or the right). And, ditto on closing your throat first. Imagine making an “l” sound, and it should just come out the other nostril. I think you can get the kits at Walgreens or Wal-mart.

    I LOVE these! They are so fabulous for allergies, and even for helping to get the gunk out during a cold, especially since it’s so hard to get “real” sudafed now. 🙂

Comments are closed.