The Bottom Line
- Easy to use
- Safe for all ages
- Might be uncomfortable for children and infants
- Effects are short-lived
- Nasal saline is available as a spray or as drops. It can also be made at home.
- It can be used by people of any age.
- It contains no medication, so there is no concern about overdose or interaction with other medications.
Guide Review - Nasal Saline Spray
Using nasal saline spray is one of my preferred ways to relieve congestion when I have a cold or upper respiratory infection. I also suffer from allergies nearly year-round and I find it very helpful when I get stuffed up. Whether I'm using it to clear out my nostrils or I want to irrigate my sinuses, I always get relief after using it. It comes in a variety of brands and different types of bottles, but they are all relatively inexpensive.
Nasal saline spray or drops are often recommended to parents of infants and young children since they are too young for over-the-counter cold medications. They are helpful for children because they thin the mucous and make it easier for mom or dad to suck out using a bulb syringe or for the child to blow his nose.
The major downside to using nasal saline spray is that the effects don't last very long. When you have a cold, you are constantly producing more mucous and while saline spray may clear it out temporarily, it doesn't work indefinitely. But it certainly is a relief while it lasts!
Another potential problem when using saline spray or drops in children and infants is that it might be difficult to use. Young children don't typically like having drops put in their noses and they might resist and make administration difficult. But if you can get them to cooperate, the relief is usually worth the minor struggle.
Overall, I find nasal saline spray can be very helpful when you have a cold or any type of congestion.