PATIENT INSTRUCTIONS FOR NASAL SALINE IRRIGATION
Nasal saline irrigation involves rinsing the nasal cavities and sinuses with a normal saline solution. A saline solution is necessary because pure water can be quite irritating for this purpose. An isotonic saline (0.9%) solution is the least irritating and is most similar to the body's natural fluids.
The following recipe will make an isotonic saline solution for sinonasal irrigations:
Clean a one-quart container (a glass jar with a lid or screw cap is best).
Into the container, mix the following:
- 1 teaspoon of pickling/canning salt (don't use table salt because it contains a number of additives)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda (not baking powder)
- 1 pint of warm water (not hot).
Make sure to mix the solution enough so that all the salt dissolves. You can store the solution at room temperature for up to one week.
You can then use the solution in a rubber bulb syringe or sinus rinse kit (available at most local pharmacies) to gently flush each nasal cavity.