Using your allergy nasal spray correctly

Many people with asthma also use allergy nasal sprays for their hay fever. 

Using your nasal spray properly is important. With the right technique you can be sure that the medicine is getting where it needs to, and you can reduce the chance of having side-effects like nosebleeds.

Corticosteroid nasal sprays:

  • are effective medicines for managing hay fever (allergic rhinitis)
  • have a good safety profile and can be used every day long term
  • are intended for everyday use.

See our How-to video library for clips on how to use each of the main nasal inhaler sprays properly.

Getting the most out of your nasal spray

Ask your doctor, pharmacist or asthma & respiratory educator to:

  • Explain how your nasal spray should be used
  • Check you are using your nasal spray properly
  • Explain how to clean your nasal spray.

What to do

  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Shake the bottle before each use.
  • Clear any mucus from your nose by blowing gently, or use a saline rinse or spray then wait 10 minutes before using your medication spray.
  • Lean your head forward and put the nozzle into your nostril gently, without pushing it in hard.
  • Point the spray bottle away from the wall that divides your nostrils (septum). At the same time, point it inwards towards the moist part of the inside of your nose.
  • Spray once into your nostril, then repeat the steps for your other nostril.
  • After using the spray, wipe the tip with a dry tissue, and put the cap back on.

Common errors to avoid

  • Forgetting to prime the spray device before using it for the first time or if you haven't used it for a while
  • Skipping doses
  • Holding your head in the wrong position (should be tilted forward, not back)
  • Pushing the nozzle too hard or far into your nose
  • Blowing your nose hard after spraying (the medicine is lost)
  • Sniffing hard after spraying (the medicine ends up in your throat instead of your nose)
  • Using saline sprays or irrigations after using the medicine, instead of before

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