I checked with an experienced pharmacist on the correct ratio/proportions necessary to make a nasal saline 0.9% isotonic solution. (Isotonic means "same as body" saline levels.) Use 250 ml (1 cup) of distilled water (or purified by boiling 5 minutes then cooled). To this, add 1/3 or 2.25 grams of non-iodized canning or pickling salt.
Note: some sites say anywhere from 1/4 to 1 tsp. The correct proportion to achieve 0.9% is exactly 1/3 teaspoon.
Store in a sealed/covered container for up to 5 days. Use the solution as close to body temperature as possible for better absorption.
Thanks for the recipe, now all I'll need to figure out is the delivery method. I have a nearly-empty Afrin bottle, wonder if that might work? Hmm...
I read you should boil the water for five minutes? But then it will be far less than a cup and the proportions will be off. As long as you are going to toss the leftovers, do you really need to boil the distilled water?
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For those of us who tend to use saline solution to calm allergic reactions, this recipe is a great money saver. Combine 1/2 tsp. of sea salt with 1 cup warm water in a bottle with a lid. Add a pinch of baking soda, place the lid on the bottle, and shake. Pour some of the mixture into a nasal spray bottle and you're ready to go. The rest of the mixture can be stored in your medicine cabinet or even in the kitchen so it will be readily available when your spray bottle needs a refill.
By Marie from West Dundee, IL
Don't for get the water has to be boiled first and the bottle sterilized, especially if you're going to store it for any length of time! (12/11/2007)
Actually the water used for making a saline solution should be distilled water available from your local drug store. (12/11/2007)
Make sure that you toss any left over solution after 24 hours so bacteria doesn't grow!! -from a nurse (02/14/2008)