PDA

View Full Version : equalization problems



MicahEW
04-21-2008, 09:24
so I went diving this weekend and on day one had trouble equalizing in the horizontal dive position. day two I took some seudafed and was chewing gum before both dives and still had trouble in the horizontal position then I tried the fin first decent and it was ok it took me a while to get to only 20ft. but up to the point of the fin first I managed to hurt my ears a bit with a forced equalization before i went up a few feet. what am i doing wrong my f(*&()*& ears i hate them nuthin but trouble lol.

fisheater
04-21-2008, 10:25
Have you had ear problems on prior dives? Airplanes?

One thing that works for me is patience. I, too, had problems with too forcefully equalizing. Now, I add gentle pressure with the Valsalva method and hold the pressure at that level until my ears clear.

cummings66
04-21-2008, 10:26
I'm guessing this was on your checkout dives? Hope you did well on them.

As to what you should do, start equalization at the surface before you go down, and do it every foot of the way. You'll find that shortly after you hit 20 feet you should be doing it easier. If you wait as you did you can not clear them, go up if that happens and equalize then back down. NEVER force it, NEVER NEVER NEVER. You WILL damage yourself doing that. If you can't equalize and going up doesn't help, dives over. Or do what I have done, stay at the depth you last cleared at, sometimes after 30 minutes or so you will clear and be able to descend. Just don't FORCE it.

MicahEW
04-21-2008, 13:16
sounds good guys I have learned my lesson I have to go back next month to redo my nitrox dive but I will be patient and go slower I guess stress doesnt help either. I have had some ear probs when I was younger but nothing recently. I am going to try the fin first decent until I get better. Thank you again guys. every little bit of info about this area of diving is always appreciated.

CompuDude
04-21-2008, 13:35
... and watch that Diver's Ear video again. Practice on land.

You'll get it. :)

DUnder
04-21-2008, 14:26
I have had trouble with 1 ear not clearing, what I do is tilt my head so that ear is up and try clearing again, seems to help me.

Jimmy
04-21-2008, 14:33
Also have a problem equalizing, sometimes even in the pool! Hopefully, slow and easy will get it during open water. On my last airplane descent, one ear didn't clear (PAINFUL). Had a hard time hearing in that ear for a few days, then it opened up. What does the Diver's Ear video show? (Firewall prevents us from viewing the vids here.) Thanks for sharing!!!:smiley20:

Penguino
04-21-2008, 15:14
Also have a problem equalizing, sometimes even in the pool! Hopefully, slow and easy will get it during open water. On my last airplane descent, one ear didn't clear (PAINFUL). Had a hard time hearing in that ear for a few days, then it opened up. What does the Diver's Ear video show? (Firewall prevents us from viewing the vids here.) Thanks for sharing!!!:smiley20:

Is there a reason that one ear would clear and the other not? (My right one has a hard time clearing but my left one is fine). I'm not sick, no sinus infection, no ear infection. Any ideas?

MicahEW
04-21-2008, 15:16
Also have a problem equalizing, sometimes even in the pool! Hopefully, slow and easy will get it during open water. On my last airplane descent, one ear didn't clear (PAINFUL). Had a hard time hearing in that ear for a few days, then it opened up. What does the Diver's Ear video show? (Firewall prevents us from viewing the vids here.) Thanks for sharing!!!:smiley20:

Is there a reason that one ear would clear and the other not? (My right one has a hard time clearing but my left one is fine). I'm not sick, no sinus infection, no ear infection. Any ideas?

My DM said that it is normal for one to clear before the other but not a signif difference. I also had a bit of the same problem with the same ears but eventually did ok.

CompuDude
04-21-2008, 15:19
Also have a problem equalizing, sometimes even in the pool! Hopefully, slow and easy will get it during open water. On my last airplane descent, one ear didn't clear (PAINFUL). Had a hard time hearing in that ear for a few days, then it opened up. What does the Diver's Ear video show? (Firewall prevents us from viewing the vids here.) Thanks for sharing!!!:smiley20:

It's a long presentation (around an hour, IIRC?) by a medical professor. Everything you could want to know about how the ear functions under pressure, and demonstrates multiple equalization techniques. There are a lot of options other than the usual Valsalva method which is normally taught. (pinch and blow)

If you're having any issues with ears and equalization, make the time to watch the video (even if you have to watch it at home!).

CFDAlden
04-22-2008, 00:42
It also get easier as you go. Around 10 dives is when my ear started equalizing easier.

CODMAN
04-22-2008, 07:06
Take your time going down and equalizing... If you have to stop and wait... So what? That,s life and it must be done without compromise! make sure your Buddy and DM know this ahead of time and are alright about this! It's their responsability to give you all the time you need to safely clear your ears, or if it's not possible, to abort the dive.

My girlfriend has chronic problems clearing and sometimes I have to wait with her for 5-10 minutes in 15 feet before she clears! that's life and I stay with her until she is OK and then we continue with the dive. That's just the way it is!!!! Don't let peer pressure infuence you into rushing your ears...

Cheers!:smiley20:

Largo
04-22-2008, 08:26
Try looking upward when you clear. That opens the Eustacian tubes.

No Misses
04-22-2008, 10:06
Here is the link for the "Diver's Ear - Under Pressure"

Doc's Diving Medicine Home Page (http://faculty.washington.edu/ekay/)

mixahl
04-22-2008, 14:52
Try different equalization techniques like jaw wiggle, swallowing is the best for me!! It moves air from your ears to pharynx. Remember, never dive when your sick, because your eustachian tubes get clogged up. If it is a persistent problem you might have enlarged adenoids, you might also snore. Get a doctor to check them out.
But like other people said, the more you dive, the easier it becomes to equalize and becomes a habit and dont even think about it.

lmorin
04-22-2008, 16:28
For certain you can have a problem in one ear and not the other. Heads (internally and externally) are commonly asymmetrical. You could have scar tissue around one eustachian tube from a long forgotten infection. I have particular problems with my left ear and have for as long as I can remember. The number of dives I have has nothing whatsoever to do with this problem.

Best advice if you have a chronic problem: As Cummings66 said above, start equalizing before you submerge!! Remember, the pain comes from water pushing inward and the more water pressure there is, the more internal air pressure you have to apply to equalize. Generate a bit of positive pressure on the surface when the amount of inward pressure is zero. This can make a dive a whole lot more pleasant.

frogman159
04-22-2008, 19:58
The diver's ear video is great. I had a little trouble before and used the valsava followed by a swallow and it works without fail for me.

Enid Diver
06-26-2009, 17:17
Has anyone tried any of the scuba diving ear plugs that are on the market. I am a new diver and am having a terrible time with equalization. I thought about buying some of the ear pieces but didn't know if they worked.