3 doctors weighed in:

If I usually sleep through flights, is there anyway to prevent the problems I have with ear pain on these long flights?

3 doctors weighed in
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics
2 doctors agree

In brief: Awaken for landing

The ear issue on flights occurs when the pressurized plane begins to descend to ground level.
Air was pushed out of your middle ear space at high altitude balancing the altitude change on your system. As you return to ground level, you need to be awake to yawn, chew gum or otherwise straighten your eustacian tube so air can re-enter your middle ear & equalize the changing pressure.Pain should stop.

In brief: Awaken for landing

The ear issue on flights occurs when the pressurized plane begins to descend to ground level.
Air was pushed out of your middle ear space at high altitude balancing the altitude change on your system. As you return to ground level, you need to be awake to yawn, chew gum or otherwise straighten your eustacian tube so air can re-enter your middle ear & equalize the changing pressure.Pain should stop.
Dr. James Ferguson
Dr. James Ferguson
Thank
Dr. Patrick Melder
ENT - Head & Neck Surgery

In brief: Use Afrin (oxymetazoline)

You can also use afrin before getting on the plane or prior to descent.
This will promote decongesting the nasal passages and may help with opening the eusachian tubes for the descent.

In brief: Use Afrin (oxymetazoline)

You can also use afrin before getting on the plane or prior to descent.
This will promote decongesting the nasal passages and may help with opening the eusachian tubes for the descent.
Dr. Patrick Melder
Dr. Patrick Melder
Thank
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