Nasal Spray congestion is a fairly common disorder due to swelling of fluid-filled nasal tissues. Sometimes it can be accompanied by symptoms of sinusitis and runny nose. Fortunately, thanks to a simple salt spray solution, prepared with water and salt, you can eliminate this annoying disturbance often linked to flu or allergies. Preparing a saline solution is easy and can be used both for adults and for children and infants; continue reading to learn how to do it.
1) Get everything you need.
Preparing a saline solution is really simple because the only ingredients required are water and salt! Sea salt or table salt is equally suitable, but be careful not to use iodized salt if you are allergic to iodine. For the administration of the saline solution, it will also be necessary a spray bottle that can contain about 30-60 ml of liquid.
Children and babies are not able to effectively blow their nose. Then get a soft rubber bulb syringe to remove nasal secretions gently and efficiently.
2) Prepare the saline solution.
Mixing water and salt is not enough. In order for the salt to dissolve completely in the water, it will be necessary to increase its temperature. Boiling tap water also allows you to kill any harmful microbe. Bring 240 ml of water to the boil, then let it cool slightly, keeping it very hot. Add ¼ teaspoon of salt and mix it patiently until dissolved. The indicated salt dose allows preparing a saline solution according to the amount of salt present in the body (isotonic).
Alternatively, you may want to prepare a saline solution with a higher salt concentration than your body (hypertonic). This hypothesis is particularly indicated in the presence of a strong nasal congestion and characterized by an abundant expulsion of mucus. If you have difficulty breathing and clearing your nose, consider using a hypertonic solution.
You can prepare a hypertonic solution by adding half a teaspoon of salt instead of just 1/4.
This high salt content solution is not suitable for use in infants and children under the age of five.8 MARCH 8 MARCH 2018
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3) Add bicarbonate (optional).
Half a teaspoon of bicarbonate allows you to adjust the pH of the saline solution, making it less pungent in the case of a particularly irritated nose, especially since it is a hypertonic solution with a high salt content. Add the bicarbonate in the still warm water and mix carefully until it dissolves.
Salt and bicarbonate can be added at the same time, but adding salt first will make it easier to dissolve.
4) Fill your spray container and store any excess salt solution.
Once the room temperature has been reached, the solution is ready for use. Transfer it to the spray bottle, then pour the excess into a small re-sealable container to keep it in the refrigerator. If necessary, after two days, throw the unused solution and prepare the other.
Use Saline Nasal Spray
5) Use the saline solution whenever you feel your nose blocked.
The size of the spray bottle will allow you to keep it always within reach, even outside the walls of your home. The purpose of the nasal spray is to soften the mucous secretions that block the airways. After each use, blow your nose to expel them.
Tilt forward and direct the nozzle towards the inside of the nostril, pointing it towards the ear.
Spray the solution once or twice in each nostril. Use your left hand to spray it in the right nostril and vice versa.
Pull slightly upwards to prevent the solution from leaking immediately out of the nostrils, but be careful not to overdo it or risk leaking into the throat, otherwise, it may irritate the nasal septum.
6) If you need to administer saline to a young child or a baby, consider using a bulb syringe.
Spill about half of the air contained in the syringe, then carefully suck up the liquid. Slightly incline the baby’s head backwards and bring the end of the syringe near one nostril. Let three drops of saline drop into each nostril, doing everything possible so as not to come into contact with the mucous membranes with the tip of the syringe (it may not be easy if the child tends to get excited!). Try to keep your head still for two or three minutes to allow the solution to work.
7) Use the bulb syringe to suck up the baby’s nasal secretions.
As for adults, wait two or three minutes after having administered the saline solution. After the indicated time, you can use the syringe to gently eliminate the nasal secretions from the nostrils. Use a soft tissue to remove any mucus from the nose. Remember to use a new handkerchief for each nostril; in addition, wash your hands thoroughly before and after each treatment.
Tilt the child’s head slightly backwards.
Press the bulb of the syringe to remove about 1/4 of the air contained, then insert the end into a nostril with extreme delicacy. Release the outlet to suck excess nasal secretions.
Do not insert the syringe tip too deeply. The goal is to remove the mucus exclusively from the final part of the nostrils.
Do what you can to avoid touching the inner walls of the nostrils, during the illness they may be particularly sensitive and irritated.
8) Maintain proper hygiene after using the bulb syringe.
Use a tissue to remove the secretions on the outer walls of the syringe, then throw it away immediately. Wash the instrument with warm soapy water immediately after use. Drain the soapy water inside, then press it to make it flow out; repeat again and again. Rinse the syringe with clean water, sucking it out and expelling it as before. Swirl the water inside the syringe to thoroughly clean the walls.
9) Repeat the treatment two or three times a day.
Be careful not to overdo it with the use of the bulb syringe. Most likely your baby’s nose will already be sore and irritated, touching it frequently could aggravate the hassle. Do not try to suck up the nasal secretions more than four times a day.
The best time to do this is before meals or sleep, in order to help your child breathe better while eating or sleeping.
If you get too excited, do your best to reassure it and try again after a while. Remember to always be extremely delicate!
10) Keep yourself hydrated.
The easiest way to alleviate nasal congestion is to keep your body well hydrated. The nasal secretions will be more fluid and fluid, simplifying the act of blowing your nose. The mucus could flow towards the throat, but although unpleasant it is a normal and healthy effect. Drinking tea or hot broth can be especially helpful in keeping you hydrated.
Drink at least 8-10 glasses of 240 ml of water every day. In case of fever, vomiting or dysentery further increases the doses of water taken.
11) Blow your nose gently.
To prevent the nose skin from drying excessively, apply a little Vaseline or hypoallergenic moisturizer. Put it on the tip of a cotton swab and distribute it gently around the nostrils. If possible, use a humidifier or place several containers filled with water throughout the home. Evaporating the water will keep the air moist. Also, when you’re sick, rest and relax as much as possible!
12) Contact a paediatrician to examine the conditions of the little ones.
For newborns, nasal congestion can be a serious disorder that can compromise both breathing and food intake. If you notice that the saline solution has no effect, call the paediatrician within 12-24 hours.
Contact your doctor immediately if the nasal congestion of your baby or young child is accompanied by a fever, cough or difficulty in breathing or eating due to a stuffy nose.
Understanding the Causes of Nasal Congestion
13) Evaluate multiple possibilities.
Nasal congestion can lead to different causes. Among the most common we can include flu, cold, sinusitis and allergies. Irritant environmental factors, such as chemicals or smoke, are additional causes of nasal congestion. Some people are suffering from constant mucous secretions, a disorder known as non-allergic rhinitis or vasomotor rhinitis (VMR).
14) Look for any signs of viral infection.
Because they live in the cells of the body and reproduce very rapidly, viruses are difficult to fight. Fortunately, the most common viral infections are colds and flu, pathologies that heal themselves after they have completed their course. In these cases, the treatment consists essentially in the management of symptoms aimed at feeling in the best possible condition. To prevent flu, submit to an annual vaccine before the beginning of the season in which it is most prevalent. The symptoms of colds and flu include:
-Closed or cola nose
-Secretions of transparent, green or yellow mucus
-Coughing and sneezing
-Muscular pains and migraines
-Intense ocular lacrimation
-Influenza may have additional symptoms: higher fever (over 39.9 ° C), nausea, chills/sweating and lack of appetite.
15) In case of bacterial infection, take antibiotics.
Bacterial infections can have a wide variety of different symptoms, including fever. Most bacterial infections are diagnosed clinically or sometimes through a culture of the nose or throat mucus. As a general rule, the doctor prescribes antibiotics in order to fight the most common bacteria. Antibiotics work by killing bacteria or preventing their reproduction, thus allowing the immune system to counteract the remaining infection.
Even if you feel better, continue taking antibiotics as prescribed by your doctor. Stopping the treatment earlier than expected would risk the infection developing again.
16) Highlight any symptoms of sinusitis.
Sinusitis is a disorder in which the paranasal sinuses become inflamed and swell, causing the accumulation of mucus. Possible causes of sinusitis include colds, allergies and bacterial or fungal infections. Although it can be annoying, sinusitis can normally be treated independently, without the need for medical intervention. Often the most serious or persistent nasal infections are treated with antibiotics. Related symptoms include:
Secretions of thick mucus, yellow or green, often present in the throat
Swelling and soreness around the eyes and in the area of eyes, cheeks and forehead
17) Evaluate the intensity of the lights in the environment in which you live.
Few people know that particularly bright lights are a common cause of nasal congestions. Eyes and nose are closely related, so eye strain can also negatively affect nasal cavities. Try to lower the light intensity of your home and your work environment and notice if there are any improvements.