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A 26-year-old male asked:

Does dry salt inhaler work? is it safe to use?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Alfredo Garcia
Pediatrics 56 years experience
Inhalers: I have never heard of a "dry salt" inhaler. Can you be more specific? Are you referring to inhalers to treat asthma? If so, there is no such thing as a "dry salt" inhaler.
Dr. Melissa Lim
Dr. Melissa Lim commented
Pulmonology 33 years experience
These are commercially available salt inhalers touted to relieve symptoms associated with a variety of lung conditions like asthma and COPD--derived from common reports of people breathing better in "salty air." There are many anecdotes and testimonials, but unfortunately extremely little published data validating benefits of inhaling dry-salt. The information on nebulized hypertonic saline (wet salt) in the literature is itself quite variable--probably because the lung diseases being treated are heterogeneous. For example, strongest evidence for acute bronchiolitis in children, but potentially dangerous in asthmatics who have an asthma attack triggered by the hypertonic saline. Bottom line? Too little evidence to support/refute dry salt's benefit, with effect (positive or negative) probably dependent on one's specific pulmonary disease. Best to discuss with personal physician!
Aug 12, 2012
Dr. Melissa Lim
Pulmonology 33 years experience
Don't know: There are many positive anecdotes and testimonials, but unfortunately extremely little published data looking at effects of inhaling dry-salt. Dry salt inhalers are not used routinely in clinical practice, which is not to say there would be no benefit, but the effect--positive or negative--one achieves probably depends specifically on what lung disease you have. Discuss further with your doctor.

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Last updated Apr 9, 2018

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