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brojack17
01-05-2010, 22:19
I have a tough time clearing my right ear. Sometimes a real tough time. I have to pinch and blow hard. I'm surprised my eyes haven't popped out. Any thoughts?

Also, my last two dives, I came out of the water with a hickey on the tip of my nose. At first, I thought it was my mask squeezing, but I was only in 12' of water today. I think it's because I have to pinch my nose so hard. Again, any thoughts?

crgjpg
01-06-2010, 00:33
Try turning your head to the left side so your right side is up.

wgt
01-06-2010, 06:12
Whatever you do, do not blow hard (particularly to the point where you think that your eyes will pop out). At depth, this approach can damage the inner ear, leading to sudden deafness.

If this looks like this will be an ongoing problem, a good starting point is to visit an ENT, preferably one with knowledge in diving medicine. You may be able to devise a better technique for equalizing, or meds may prove helpful. Whatever the solution, patience and care are key.


I have a tough time clearing my right ear. Sometimes a real tough time. I have to pinch and blow hard. I'm surprised my eyes haven't popped out. Any thoughts?

boates
01-06-2010, 08:01
When my ear acts up, a see saw descent is the only thing that works for me. Feet 1st, or level (as in laying on bed), feet 1st is easiest to learn this technique, inhale at surface kick up exhale descend a few ft, inhale rise (just a ft or 2 with the breath only), until you feel the pressure release, exhale descend, and so on. Don't use your feet to rise, just the breath, in fact, forget you have feet(conditions permitting) till you hit 30'. Once at 30'-40', you should be fine. Takes a few min longer, but really works.

Nose hickey........thats new to me, however, I would make certain that the mask is indeed a good fit. Alternatively make sure your only gently pinching and holding your nose....not twisting it off your face! Clearing your ears isn't how hard you pinch and blow (dangerous), it's in proper technique. Also keep wiggling your jaw side to side as you attempt to clear.

Hope this helps, safe diving.

russp
01-06-2010, 08:26
The pinch and blow method of equalizing has never worked well for me, wether descending feet first or horizontal. I gulp a little air into my mouth and then swallow to equalize and seldom have a problem as long as I do it often enough.

rayaa3
01-06-2010, 08:36
When my ear acts up, a see saw descent is the only thing that works for me. Feet 1st, or level (as in laying on bed), feet 1st is easiest to learn this technique, inhale at surface kick up exhale descend a few ft, inhale rise (just a ft or 2 with the breath only), until you feel the pressure release, exhale descend, and so on. Don't use your feet to rise, just the breath, in fact, forget you have feet(conditions permitting) till you hit 30'. Once at 30'-40', you should be fine. Takes a few min longer, but really works.

Nose hickey........thats new to me, however, I would make certain that the mask is indeed a good fit. Alternatively make sure your only gently pinching and holding your nose....not twisting it off your face! Clearing your ears isn't how hard you pinch and blow (dangerous), it's in proper technique. Also keep wiggling your jaw side to side as you attempt to clear.

Hope this helps, safe diving.

I agree with the see saw descent. If you can't clear, go up 2 feet, try to clear, once clear go back down, repeat until you reach depth.

Also, my daughter found she couldn't clear through the nose blow method, only thing that worked for her was the jaw popping method/swallowing (which doesn't work for me most of the time).

The only time the see saw method will be an issue is when on sites with heavy current, and trying to stay in a group. You often need to be able to descend in a hurry so that the group doesn't get strung out, as the current varies at depth (high current near surface, lower current at depth, etc).

It's never a bad idea to see an ENT about this kind of thing.

Redfish
01-19-2010, 13:51
I have this same problem and in fact even had a sinus squeeze durring my OW cert. Came up from a drill and had some blood in my mask. This happened twice.

I find that I have to pinch my nose and blow hard which worries me. So I will be trying some other methods.

A few years ago I started having issues flying and at one point Dr said I should not fly for a month.

I just recently went to an ENT (which I was not impressed with at all) and after explaning issues with flights and diving he did tests and looked in all of the normal places.

The only outcome at this point is that I am now on a nose spray. He also has me use Afren which is not something you want to use on a daily basis.

I am to use my nose spray every day. I am to only use the afren before I fly or before I dive. I have flown a couple times since this and the afren I guess works becasue no pain.

Next test will be the dives.


If I still have problem I will be returning to the ENT and push the issue.

annasea
01-19-2010, 16:18
I have the same problem... my left ear can equalize very easily but there is no way the right one will using the pinch and blow method. (I, too, had a nose hickey when I tried pinch and blow so I know what you're referring to.)

What works for me is to push my tongue up against the roof of my mouth and swallow. It's not as easy to do because all my dives start out with a pretty dry mouth, but it always works. I go down slower than most but I hate current dives so I'm good. :smiley2:

j1j2j38
01-19-2010, 17:55
Yeah Afren works well for me when necessary, or sudafed for more mild congestion. I find it gets worse during a day of diving. The alternate clearing methods and equalizing on the surface also sometimes help.

DivingCRNA
01-19-2010, 18:17
:ttiuwop:

russp
01-20-2010, 13:13
:ttiuwop:

Uhmmm, what exactly do you want pictures of?!:smiley5:

CA_Diver
01-25-2010, 01:38
:ttiuwop:

Uhmmm, what exactly do you want pictures of?!:smiley5:

+1

anyway...

+1 on the clearing at the surface and VERY often as you descend. If you can't clear go up a little and try again.

If people do have trouble clearing I tell them to look up, tilt their head side-to-side, and drop their jaw and move it side to side. If they still can't clear their ears, the dive is over.

good luck with that, be safe

DivingCRNA
01-25-2010, 05:50
:ttiuwop:

Uhmmm, what exactly do you want pictures of?!:smiley5:

The nose hickey!

scubajane
01-25-2010, 16:10
practice clearing your ears every day even when you are not diving. It helps limber them up. on the day of diving equalize frequently and gently from the time you get out of bed!! I had trouble after an ear infection and practice made perfect. happy diving

jeffgerritsen
02-02-2010, 23:29
This is a common problem to say the least for many of us.

I too have problems with the right ear equalizing on decent. The see saw method works and I use one of many equalizing techniques such as the Edmonds method.

A visit to the ENT confirmed I have borderline dysfunctional euastation tubes due to chronic allergic rhinitis (grass pollens etc...). After some research prior to seeing the ENT, and discussion with the ENT here is what works for me; start with nasonnex two weeks before the dive (a cortical steroid for allergy control). On the day of the dive a couple of squirts of afrain or generic equivalent, 30 mg of sudafed, and 400 mg of ibuprofen. After each dive I use swim ear preparation in each ear (or a home mixture of one part isopropol alcohol and one part white distilled vinegar). I continue the sudafed and ibuprofen for two days after the dive or last dive if diving multiple days.

This regime helps on equalization but doesn't completely solve it. However it really helps on post diving days - my middle ear isn't plugged up for two to four days.

Many times, researching symptoms and trying solutions or parts of solutions using over the counter remedies may help or better yet may solve the problem.

As always YMMV.

Jeff

mrmccoy
02-03-2010, 04:50
I have started to use several methods; pinch n blow, pinch and swallow(seems to work the best but is hard to do with a reg in your mouth)and the swallow and move jaw/neck. I think the more often you dive the easier it is to equalize.

frogger0724
02-08-2010, 14:10
I just finished my OW this past weekend and have problems equalizing, too, but mostly just on the first dive of each day. I researched last night and will try to equalize before even getting in the water next time. I find that tilting my head to the opposite side (ear not equalized up) and doing the nose pinch and gentle blow usually helps. I had to do what seems like the seesaw, although I did it head up, not feet first. I got the nose hickey too, I have a slightly reddened tip on my nose, a little like Rudolph!

Now I'm having crackling in my ears when I swallow, esp in my right ear. I can't get off work until next week to see a doctor, maybe someone can help me. I can hear fine, it's just annoying. Did I damage my ear yesterday, or get some fluid in it?

josh7284
05-07-2010, 08:55
I had the same exact problem with clearing my right ear. It is most likely becuase you keep your shoulders tensed up and it is squeezing on your eustachan tubes ( this is what i did anyway) so like whoever else said just lean your head to the left so the tubes are not closed

brojack17
05-22-2010, 17:49
The ear clearing is getting better but I still wind up with a nose hickey every time I dive.

PACKRMAN
05-22-2010, 18:39
Jack
You might try a little less lead.

I don't think you are supposed to smash your face into the bottom:smiley36:

DivingCRNA
05-23-2010, 06:37
Maybe your mask doesn't fit right??