Benefits and Side Effects of Clear Nasal Spray
For the majority of people suffering from nasal congestion, using a saline wash can be very beneficial. This simple home remedy for stuffy noses works by thinning and loosening mucus in your nose and making breathing easier. Saline nasal sprays also moisturize dryness in your nose, which helps to reduce irritation due to allergies or other causes.
Like saline nasal washes, saline nasal sprays are also available over the counter at drugstores and pharmacies. They are sold under various brand names, but they all contain similar ingredients. Commonly used ingredients in saline nasal sprays include water, sodium chloride (salt), EDTA (an additive that helps increase shelf life), and sodium citrate (an additive that keeps the mixture from becoming too salty).
Several studies have been conducted to examine the effectiveness of saline nasal spray in treating different conditions. Here is a look at what they found:
“Saline drops and sprays help loosen congestion, making it easier to drain the nose and sinuses,” explains Jennifer Kravis, MD, assistant professor of otolaryngology at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai in New York City.
2. Cold Symptoms:
a recent study showed that a saline nasal spray is as effective as decongestant sprays to reduce cold symptoms such as congestion.
a review of studies that examined saline nasal spray for asthma reported improvements in symptoms among patients who had been experiencing symptoms despite prescription medication. “These drops and sprays help thin the mucus, making it easier to get air through your nose,” Dr. Kravis adds. However, these medications won’t stop an asthma attack once it has started.
4. Post Nasal Drip:
several studies suggest saline nasal spray can improve sinus drainage and alleviate post-nasal drip, a common problem experienced by people with allergies or colds.
5. Swimmer’s Ear:
if you frequently swim and find yourself suffering from ear pain due to dryness or irritation, the saline nasal spray can help. “Swimmer’s ear is usually caused by allergies or colds that lead to post-nasal drip,” says Dr. Kravis. In addition, when your nose is stuffy, the back of your throat becomes dry, which results in increased swallowing and subsequent irritation of the ear canal.
6. Preventing Cancer:
although studies have yet to reach a definitive conclusion, there is some evidence that saline nasal spray may help reduce cancer risk. For example, one study found an association between people with a high level of salt in their diets and a decreased occurrence of nasopharyngeal cancer (cancer that occurs at the top part of the throat near the base of the skull).
7. Preventing Kidney Stones:
a study published in 2003 found that people who took sodium bicarbonate (a common ingredient in saline nasal sprays and washes) and sodium chloride to prevent calcium oxalate stones had a reduced risk of developing those stones. Researchers believe this might be due to the ability of these ingredients to reduce the variety of substances that can cause stone formation.
8. Preventing Ear Infections:
although controversial, some doctors have suggested that saline nasal spray could help prevent ear infections in children during bathing because it will moisten the eardrum and increase blood flow to this area. However, no formal studies have been conducted, so it is too early to reach a definitive conclusion.
9. Treating Hiccups:
several studies have shown that sniffing solutions containing glucose can stop hiccups in their tracks (but check with your doctor before using).
10. Stuffy Nose Due To Colds, Allergies, Or Flu:
saline nasal spray can help thin mucus, making it easier to drain the sinuses. In addition, thinning out thick nasal secretions can help reduce nasal congestion associated with these conditions.
11. Sinus Problems:
over-the-counter saline nasal sprays may be helpful for people experiencing chronic runny noses or post-nasal drip as a result of allergies or colds.
12. Sore Throat:
by spraying a solution of half saline and half warm water into the back of your throat, you can relieve pain from a sore or irritated throat. Be sure to spit it out afterward, though (don’t swallow because this solution is not meant for ingestion), and do not exceed three times in one day.
13. Tourette Syndrome:
a study published in 2011 found that nasal hypertonic saline was as effective as risperidone for reducing symptoms of children and adults with Tourette syndrome over three months.
14. Muscle Stiffness After Exercise:
a recent study suggests that nasal irrigation could help reduce muscle stiffness after exercise. In addition, the researchers suspect that nasal irrigation may help reduce excessive nose-breathing, improving the function of upper respiratory muscles.
15. To Clear Up Nose Bleeds:
for people who experience chronic nose bleeds, rinsing out the nose with saline solution can help clear up these types of bleeding episodes. Remember, though, that you should seek a doctor’s advice if you keep getting nose bleeds.
is saline nasal spray safe:
Nasal saline spray or nasal irrigation is one of the major home remedies used in cold, sinusitis, and hay fever. It has been clinically proven to be effective against various respiratory diseases. However, some users express concern over whether it is safe for use in any condition or not. Let us look at what doctors have to say about the safety of using the nasal saline spray.
According to Dr. Richard Nelson, a pharmacist from Albuquerque, there is nothing to worry about using the saltwater nasal spray. It has no side effects whatsoever. The only precautions that need to be taken while using the saline solution are:
1] Make sure you buy the saline nasal spray from a reputable pharmacy
2] Do not overuse the sprays, as they can dry out your nose
3] If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, do not use it without consulting your doctor first.
4] If you have certain other health conditions like sinusitis, asthma, etc., consult your doctor before using the saline nasal spray
The saline solution may indeed cause temporary burning and stinging sensations in the nose. However, if it becomes too severe or continues for a long time, you should discontinue using the saltwater spray and consult your doctor immediately. Overuse can also lead to certain complications, such as rebound sinusitis.
Saline nasal spray side effects:
Nasal irrigation with saline can be done as often as needed and at the convenience of the individual. However, there are specific side effects that need to be kept in mind while using saline nasal spray:
Some people experience irritation or stinging sensation when they first use a saline spray. This is because the salt concentration of the solution is higher than your body fluids. However, your nose becomes accustomed to it over some time, and there is no irritation at all.
If you have allergies or aspirin sensitivities, consult your doctor before using the saline nasal spray. It can lead to specific allergic reactions such as swelling in the face and upper chest.
Saline nasal spray can cause infections if it is used for very long periods. It should be discontinued as soon as you start noticing any side effects like pain, tenderness, redness, etc.
If you have a dry nose to begin with, using saline sprays may make it dryer. In this case, using a moisturizing spray or ointment before using the saline nasal spray would be a good idea.
Using saline sprays more than twice a day can lead to rebound effects, i.e., your nose becomes congested again after the rush wears off. Therefore, it is always advisable to use it as required.
Perforation of the nasal tissue:
If you have a deviated septum, using a saline nasal spray for prolonged periods can lead to perforation of the nasal tissue, which is dangerous in such cases. In addition, overuse or overuse during winter when the air has high humidity levels can also lead to nasal tissue perforation.