A remedy to flush out clogged nasal passages could be putting your family at risk of a deadly infection.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration reports improper use of neti pots could increase a person’s risk of brain-eating amoebas.
Neti pots are a nasal irrigation system that use a saline or saltwater solution to treat congested sinuses, colds and allergies. They include bulb syringes, squeeze bottles and battery-operated pulsed water devices.
The FDA warns if not cleaned properly, the nasal rinse devices could trap bacteria and protozoa, including amoebas, and infect the user.
To use safely, devices should be rinsed only with distilled, sterile or previously boiled water.
Health officials said tap water isn’t safe to use as a nasal rinse because it doesn’t filter the low levels of organisms normally found in the water.
The organisms are safe to swallow because stomach acid kills them, but in your nose these organisms can stay alive and cause potentially serious infections, the FDA said.
For more tips on how to safely use a nasal irrigation system, click here.
Copyright 2017 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.