Nasal inhalant sprays are commonly recommended for the management of allergic and non-allergic rhinitis. Nasal sprays deliver medications directly into the nasal passages, where they have a localised effect on the lining of the nasal mucosa. When used properly, nasal sprays can effectively provide relief from sneezing, itching, nasal congestion, runny nose and postnasal drip, associated with rhinitis.
Correct nasal spray technique is very important. For the best results, follow these simple steps (NACA, 2012):
1. Blow your nose gently to clear mucous (a saline nasal spray may assist to help thin and loosen mucous)
2. Prime the nasal spray as per manufacturer instruction.
3. Use your finger to gently close off one of your nostrils.
4. Tilt your head slightly forward and gently insert the nozzle of the spray into your other nostril. Be careful not to insert the nozzle too far, or push too hard.
5. Angle the nozzle in a slightly outwards direction. Avoid angling the nozzle toward the septum (divider separating the nostrils).
6. Spray while inhaling gently through your nose.
7. Repeat steps 3-6 for the remaining nostril.
Important to note:
– Clearing mucous from the nose prior to administering medicated nasal sprays is essential to enable the local absorption of medications within nasal tissue. Non-medicated saline nasal sprays can help to loosen and thin mucous.
– Coating the nasal tissue will enhance the effectiveness of the nasal spray. Inserting the nozzle too far, spraying toward the back of the nose and/or inhaling aggressively while spraying is not recommended as this increases the likelihood the spray will pass through the nose and be wasted down the back of throat.
– To avoid causing trauma to the septum, the nozzle of the nasal spray should always be angled in a slightly outward direction.
Before commencing a nasal spray treatment, it is recommended individuals always seek professional advice from a doctor or pharmacist
Look down. Spray a ‘V’. Picture courtesy of Meda Pharmaceuticals Pty Ltd. Accessed Aug 14, 2015, http://www.myhayfever.com.au
Nasonex®: How to spray. Picture courtesy of Nasonex®, Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp.
National Asthma Council Australia [NACA]. 2012. Allergic Rhinitis and Asthma: Information Paper for Health Professionals. Accessed August 14, 2015, http://www.nationalasthma.org.au/uploads/publication/allergic-rhinitis-asthma-hp.pdf