The NeilMed Sinus Rinse device and solution was designed to combat standard allergy symptoms. I figured it must also work for blowing the saltwater out of surfers’ sinuses, and after three years of using the Rinse I am convinced that it works incredibly well for preventing nasty sinus infections when used shortly after recreating in contaminated water.
The NeilMed Sinus Rinse is ideal for those of us who surf around urban areas, river mouths, and powerful, sandy beachbreaks.
Last week San Diego had a hideous sewage spill that ran into the ocean and closed Blacks Beach (one of our best surfing beaches) for a few days. Most of the surrounding beaches were contaminated as well. Many of us kept surfing through the contamination period because there was a nice little south swell running.
Lots of surfers who were out during the sewage spill came down with avoidable sinus infections. Many of them are still feeling ill.
Getting sick from surfing in San Diego is nothing new, and this goes for many other areas in Southern California as well. The water down here seems to be constantly polluted, causing surfers to get sick on a regular basis.
I ended up flushing my head with the NeilMed Sinus Rinse shortly after I came in from surfing through the contaminated sessions last week, which is most likely the only reason I was able to escape the sinus infection that so many other surfers contracted.
Using the NeilMed Sinus Rinse is pretty uncomfortable.
How it works:
You fill up the plastic flush container with warm water, pour in a premixed packet of pH-balanced sodium chloride and sodium bicarbonate that comes with the flusher, shake it up, and literally snort the water through your nose while coughing it back out through your mouth.
Even though it is an uncomfortable procedure, I’m stoked every time I remember to flush with the NeilMed Sinus Rinse after dirty sessions. If I hadn’t flushed my head last week, I would probably be sick right now.
The NeilMed Sinus Rinse only costs around $15 and comes with 50 regular solution packets. You can buy an additional 100 regular premixed packets of pH-balanced sodium chloride and sodium bicarbonate for another $15, which should cover you for an entire year.
They are sold in most large pharmacies and can also be found online.
Here is a little movie made by NeilMed about how it all works. Believe me, the lady snorting the solution over the sink makes it look way more comfortable than it really is!
NeilMed Sinus Rinse could be your surfing-pollution solution.