How to Pop Your Ears?
Ever felt that discomfort in your ears, especially during a plane journey? It’s like they need to pop. This sensation, known as ear barotrauma, occurs when air pressure imbalances on either side of your eardrum. To restore balance, your Eustachian tubes, connecting the middle ear to your throat, must open up. The good news? There are simple ways to pop your ears, and we’re here to guide you through them. From yawning to gentle maneuvers, discover easy remedies to pop your ears and bid farewell to that stuffed feeling. Read on for quick solutions!
Simple tricks to pop your ears
If you are experiencing clogged ears due to altitude changes, there are several methods you can try to relieve the pressure.
A simple Yawn
One effective method is yawning, which helps to open up the Eustachian tubes in your ears. To do this, open your mouth as if you were going to say “ah” and then try to yawn. Keep your mouth open in an “O” shape until you feel the pressure rebalance. You will hear and feel a pop, and your hearing will also improve.
Consider chewing gum
Chewing gum is another way to equalize the pressure in your ears. When you chew, your mouth produces saliva, which helps to force you to swallow. This swallowing motion opens up the Eustachian tubes and equalizes the pressure. Start chewing gum before takeoff or landing to prevent your ears from becoming stuffed up.
Earplugs can also help your ears stay equalized during a flight. After you have taken your seat on the plane, insert a pair of filtered earplugs. This will help your ears feel more comfortable during takeoff and landing, although it will not completely eliminate the pressure. You will still need to pop your ears, but your ears may feel a little more comfortable overall.
A simple way is to drink water or any non-caffeinated beverage, which helps to open up your Eustachian tubes. If your ears don’t pop at first, take a few more sips of your drink and see if that helps. Additionally, drinking plenty of water while flying helps to prevent your nasal mucus from becoming too thick, which can cause blocked Eustachian tubes.
Try hard candies or lozenges
Another option is to suck on a hard candy or lozenge, which stimulates saliva and encourages swallowing. This helps to open up your Eustachian tubes, relieving any potential ear pressure. Be sure to bring a few hard candies with you on your next flight or trip with altitude changes.
You can also try the Valsalva maneuver, which involves gently pinching the end of your nose and exhaling through it as if you were blowing your nose. This creates pressure that can open up your Eustachian tubes and relieve ear pressure.
Another technique is the Toynbee maneuver, which involves swallowing while holding your nose. This can also help to equalize the pressure in your ears and relieve discomfort. Alternatively, you can try the Lowry technique, which combines both the Valsalva and Toynbee maneuvers by holding your nose, swallowing, and exhaling gently.
Pop your ears by holding your nose and making a “k” sound. As you pinch your nostrils shut, try saying the beginning of the word crow or cow. The hard “k” sound may encourage your ears to pop and provide some relief. Words like cake, cop, cold, carrot, and kid can also help you make that hard “k” sound.
Take decongestant medication
Decongestant medication helps your ears pop when you’re feeling ill. When your nose is all stuffed up (like when you have a cold), the mucous membranes in your ears and nose become inflamed—this makes it more challenging to “pop” your ears and relieve any uncomfortable pressure. To help with this, take an OTC nasal spray or decongestant pills to help make your mucous membranes less swollen.
Stay awake during parts of your flight
Staying alert makes it easier to manage the pressure in your ears. The biggest pressure changes happen at the beginning and end of a flight. So, make sure that you’re alert and ready to pop your ears while your plane is taking off and landing—this helps your ears feel more comfortable in the long run.
If you are experiencing difficulty in popping your ears in one or both ears and causing discomfort or even pain. That sensation may be short-lived, intermittent, or chronic. If you have tried the above-mentioned remedies but still haven’t experienced any relief, it is highly recommended to consult your doctor. It’s possible that you may have an infection or there might be another underlying reason (allergies or infection) why your ears won’t pop.
Enjoy the journey, free from ear pressure woes!