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## Unclogging Your Ears After Scuba Diving

Scuba diving is an exhilarating and rewarding activity, but it can sometimes lead to ear problems. One common issue is clogged ears, which can be uncomfortable and even painful. If you’re experiencing clogged ears after scuba diving, there are a few things you can do to unclog them.

### Causes of Clogged Ears After Scuba Diving

Clogged ears after scuba diving are caused by a buildup of pressure in the Eustachian tubes, which are the small tubes that connect the middle ear to the back of the throat. When you dive, the pressure of the water outside your body increases, which can cause the Eustachian tubes to close. This can trap air in the middle ear, which can lead to pain and congestion.

### Symptoms of Clogged Ears After Scuba Diving

The symptoms of clogged ears after scuba diving can include:

* Pain in the ears
* A feeling of fullness or pressure in the ears
* Hearing loss
* Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
* Dizziness

### How to Unclog Your Ears After Scuba Diving

There are a few different ways to unclog your ears after scuba diving. Some of the most common methods include:

* **Valsalva maneuver:** To perform the Valsalva maneuver, pinch your nose closed and blow gently through your nose. This will help to open the Eustachian tubes and equalize the pressure in your ears.
* **Toynbee maneuver:** To perform the Toynbee maneuver, swallow while pinching your nose closed. This will also help to open the Eustachian tubes and equalize the pressure in your ears.
* **Frenzel maneuver:** To perform the Frenzel maneuver, close your mouth and nose and try to exhale through your nose. This will help to build up pressure in the Eustachian tubes and force them open.
* **Cautious use of nasal decongestants:** If the above methods do not relieve your ear congestion, you may try using a nasal decongestant. However, it is important to use nasal decongestants cautiously, as they can have side effects such as rebound congestion and high blood pressure.
* **Steam inhalation:** Inhaling steam can help to thin mucus and promote drainage. You can boil a pot of water and place it on a table or counter. Cover your head with a towel and inhale the steam for 10-15 minutes.
* **Warm compresses:** Applying a warm compress to your ears can help to relieve pain and discomfort. Soak a washcloth in warm water and wring it out. Place the compress over your ears for 10-15 minutes at a time.
* **Over-the-counter pain relievers:** If you are experiencing pain, you may take over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

### When to See a Doctor

If your ear congestion does not improve after a few days, or if you are experiencing severe pain, you should see a doctor. You may have a more serious condition, such as a middle ear infection or a perforated eardrum.

### Prevention

There are a few things you can do to prevent clogged ears after scuba diving, including:

* Equalize the pressure in your ears frequently while diving.
* Avoid diving if you have a cold or sinus infection.
* Use earplugs if you are diving in cold water.
* Take a decongestant before diving if you are prone to ear congestion.

## Conclusion

Clogged ears after scuba diving are a common problem, but there are a few things you can do to unclog them. If your ear congestion does not improve after a few days, or if you are experiencing severe pain, you should see a doctor.

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