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Health Tip: Rinsing Your Sinuses

Please note: This article was published more than one year ago. The facts and conclusions presented may have since changed and may no longer be accurate. And "More information" links may no longer work. Questions about personal health should always be referred to a physician or other health care professional.

(HealthDay News) -- Nasal irrigation systems, sometimes called neti pots, use a saltwater solution to help tame congested sinuses.

The devices, when used properly, can help moisten dried and swollen nasal passages.

But if misused or improperly cleaned, they can also lead to infection, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warns.

The FDA suggests using only distilled, sterile or boiled-and-cooled water in a nasal irrigation device.

Here are the agency's suggestions for proper use:

  • Wash and dry your hands.
  • Before use, make sure the device is clean and completely dry.
  • Follow the manufacturer's directions.
  • After use, wash the device and dry the inside with a clean paper towel. Or let the device air dry.

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