I went back to the clinic on Thursday immediately after class when I started having some serious coughing/hacking/choking/wheezing fits before teaching my 11 AM. Had it not been for my inhaler, I’m not sure I would have made it through class. After checking me out, doing some blood work, and X-raying my chest, the doctor concluded I had a sinus infection that was dumping gook into my bronchial passages (hence the coughing) and put me on Cipro. I started feeling a bit better on Friday, but was still coughing and run down. A few friends (via Facebook) sang the praises of Neti pots, so I went to the store this morning to buy a sinus rinse kit. Yes, I’m too chickenshit to dump salt water into my sinuses.

It took me a bit of time to work up the courage to even start squeezing the bottle, but once I got things going (and the water poured out the other nostril), I began to see why people liked it. One downside to the process is that you tend to leak profusely for another half hour after you squirt, particularly if you lean over. I found this out when I leaned over to kiss the spouse (grading papers and all) and leaked water on him and some unfortunate student’s paper. Luckily, it caused no damage and we were able to laugh about it, but that kind of thing can really hurt one’s image in some circles.

Three hours hence and I’m feeling a ton better. I cooked dinner, made two loaves of pumpkin coconut bread, and I plan to stop in on a friend’s Halloween block party later. Basically, I’m hooked! The initial “OMG-ick!-It’s-running-through-my-nose” factor is pretty substantial, but the after effects are well worth it! My hope is that if I do it regularly that I’ll stave off a large number of future upper respiratory infections and have far fewer days where I’m a wheezy, weepy, sneezy mess.

It seems gross, but kids, irrigate your sinuses. They’ll thank you for it profusely!