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Avatar universal

Neti Pot and nasal irrigation

When I try to use a neti pot my head hurts so much I have to stop. Its like a bad headache. A CT scan years ago showed my sinuses were blocked. So is Nasal Irrigation not suitable for blocked sinuses?
23 Responses
449909 tn?1233413497
Neti Pot is from ancient India. In "Yoga" nethi (Sanskrit word meaning - 'to clean') was/ is advised using such pots. It is just a way to pass water into the nose to wash the same - and whatever opens into it (sinuses).

But one problem is that it may transfer dirt/bacteria from one place to another inside the nose and sinuses and hence may 'spread' the infection when the body defenses may be trying to limit it. So it may be unwise to use in case of acute infections.

Ideally it should be undertaken after proper advice from a medical doctor. With a CT showing your sinuses 'blocked', better take advice from an ENT specialist.

Hope this helps.


Dr.Thomas Antony
Avatar universal
If the CT scan was years ago, I agree with Dr. Anthony, go see an ENT specialist.

Nasal irrigation works very well against blocked sinuses, but not the way most people do it.  The neti pot, to me, looks like an invitation to a Eustachian tube infection.  A better device is Dr. Mehta's Neilmed Sinus Rinse, available at most drugstores.

Unfortunately, it only clears the lower sinuses (maxillary and ethmoid) before gravity takes over.

I invented the Flip-Turn Sinus Flush, which uses gravity to flush out all of the sinuses.  It's extremely effective, but it's risky, because you have to bend over, which could possibly make some people dizzy and fall.
I only advocate it if people have tried everything else short of surgery, or if they are young and fit.


good luck,
Avatar universal
The original scan in 1998 showed all 4 sinuses were blocked. I didnt have surgery as I assumed it would just unblock.

This week I had a CT scan and it showed a normal scan which really surprised me as I have had a sinus headache for at leaSt a few weeks. The scan showed no blockage at all so I cant understand why my cheeks ache and head aches across the top of my eyes.

I tried nasal irrigation and water didnt really come out of my other nostril and my headache was so bad I had to stop.
I took the scan back to my Dr and he suggested a nasal spray which hasnt worked
So I am now going to have another scan from a different place for a second opinion
449909 tn?1233413497
1. Repeating CT scans at such short intervals is not advisable because of radiation. Unless of  course there is dire emergency.

2. The mucosa inside the nose may be sending the pain signals, like you experience with nasal irrigation.
The nasal spray was probably advised to tackle the inflammation of the nasal mucosa. You say it hasn't helped.

3. Did you visit an ENT specialist? He may be able to make out if there is something wrong inside which may be causing such pain.

4. If there is nothing to account for the facial pain, one has to step back to take a look at the whole picture. The pain may be signals from higher levels along the nerve path.

Your age, whether you bare a diabetic or not, what medications you are on - all count. How long has the pain been there? Do your monthly cycles influence the pain? How is your sleep? Do you have nightmares? How do you rate yourself in the happiness - sadness scale?

Hope this helps.


Dr.Thomas Antony
Avatar universal
Dr Antony
This is becoming very interesting

With the scan in 1998 it said I had a deviated septum as well as blocked sinuses.

The scan last week 2009 showed septum central. I went back to the CT scan radiologist and said does that mean septum is straight as I cant have a deviated septum in 1998 and a central (straight ) septum in 2009.

I was told the top Dr at the radiologist (In Australia) will look at the scan and advise me.
So does central mean straight?

I have had this  sinus (icecream type headache)  over my eyes and cheeks for about a month now.

Sinus tablets and sprays hasnt helped.

I am past menopause now for the last two years and dont believe its due to any other reason other than sinus.
449909 tn?1233413497
Deviated septum in 1998 and straight in 2009 is no big deal. That too in the black and white images of CT scan films.

And sometimes we see this happening over a few days. The mucous membrane of the nose is 'cavernous' and can engorge or shrink (normal 4 hr cycles as well as for many other reasons) and can take the cartilaginous part of septum with it, and appear deviated.

And nobody has written the final book on human physiology. Many things are being discovered :-)

What makes you think/believe your headache/ pain face is from sinus?

New chapters on pain/ headache etc are being written world over, don't be surprised if they rechristen many headaches;-)


Dr.Thomas Antony

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