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Help!! Ear ringing!!

Fondueset

Carp Whisperer
You've got fluid buildup in your middle ear - it's what happens; you lose the high frequencies. It can happen with or without infection - most commonly with. You might want to look at diet - dairy can contribute. Decongestants can help it to drain. Adequate hydration helps. The congestion and possible inflammation is also the cause of equalization problems. There are a couple of products I use to avoid infection - one is Xlear - a nasal spray I use after dives where I've taken on water - another is propolis spray - which is good for throat infections. You can also try a neti pot - but be sure the water has been boiled and salt added.
 
Reactions: Fitzy_1982

Fitzy_1982

Underwater Ninja
May 7, 2010
276
41
68
Mornington Peninsula, Melbourne
I loaded up on decongestants and ibuprofen all week and by the weekend my ear was relatively ok, still a little bit of ringing. Went for a dive and it felt pretty good. In the end my problem ear was equalizing better than my good ear. When I got out of the water it seems like what ever build up was in my ear came out. All good now but I'll be taking it easy for awhile.
Its amazing that something so small can prevent you from diving.
 

Soggy_Kilt

Member
Nov 26, 2014
9
1
13
30
Scotland
I thought I'd add my recent experience with this as I found this thread quite useful when searching for information on what I was experiencing.

I was diving on three consecutive days, on the second day I began to experience some equalisation problems when diving head first but no problems feet first. On the third day I had a couple of reverse blockages on ascent but continued anyway (I didn't realise at the time that this is a bad practise!), afterwards my ear felt all stuffy like there was water in there and later on in the day I developed the ringing. I went to the docs 48 hours later and he said both ear drums were red and inflamed but no hole, phew!

Since then I've rested it and kept it dry for a week and it got to the point of feeling much better, the ringing went after 3/4 days and then I just had a very slight ache in both ears which lasted a day or so.

Today, 7 days after the last dive I was planing to do my final dive session of the SSI level 2 having completed the rest of the course but I woke up and just knew it would be a bad idea. My ear feels stuffy again and I couldn't equalise easily at all, I think I caused a bit of trauma by practising some equalisation yesterday in anticipation of today.

Pretty gutted not to finish but I just didn't think it was worth the risk, especially so early in my freediving career.
 

Fondueset

Carp Whisperer
I thought I'd add my recent experience with this as I found this thread quite useful when searching for information on what I was experiencing.

I was diving on three consecutive days, on the second day I began to experience some equalisation problems when diving head first but no problems feet first. On the third day I had a couple of reverse blockages on ascent but continued anyway (I didn't realise at the time that this is a bad practise!), afterwards my ear felt all stuffy like there was water in there and later on in the day I developed the ringing. I went to the docs 48 hours later and he said both ear drums were red and inflamed but no hole, phew!

Since then I've rested it and kept it dry for a week and it got to the point of feeling much better, the ringing went after 3/4 days and then I just had a very slight ache in both ears which lasted a day or so.

Today, 7 days after the last dive I was planing to do my final dive session of the SSI level 2 having completed the rest of the course but I woke up and just knew it would be a bad idea. My ear feels stuffy again and I couldn't equalise easily at all, I think I caused a bit of trauma by practising some equalisation yesterday in anticipation of today.

Pretty gutted not to finish but I just didn't think it was worth the risk, especially so early in my freediving career.
Sometimes you get fluid in the middle ear. It can feel and sound exactly like water in the outer ear canal. I experience this fairly often, but I never have trouble equalizing. You are right that it is absolutely critical not to mess around with equalization problems.
 

Soggy_Kilt

Member
Nov 26, 2014
9
1
13
30
Scotland
Sometimes you get fluid in the middle ear. It can feel and sound exactly like water in the outer ear canal. I experience this fairly often, but I never have trouble equalizing. You are right that it is absolutely critical not to mess around with equalization problems.
Hey,

I've had that before too, it tends to happen when I duck dive. This time it just doesn't feel right and I knew straight away that forcing it would be a bad idea.

Dry land training for me it is. At least it got 3 dives and 2 pool sessions in before I had to stop.
 

Lauri_A

Member
Jan 2, 2014
30
7
23
38
Helsinki, Finland
Just as a heads-up for others:

I suffered a reverse block last summer on one dive, sharp pain coming to the surface which helped when I went down again.

After that I had a muffled ear with a liquid feeling and after a while the ear started ringing. The ringing did not stop and after 3 days I called DAN and asked what should I do.

Diagnosis: middle-ear barotrauma. There was a risk to damaging the oval/round window which could have resulted in permanent damage.

Treatment: absolute no diving for 2 weeks, no equalisation or anything that could stress the ears. NSAID's or decongestants don't help, you just need to rest, period.

It took almost 3 weeks for the ringing to stop, I'm now extremely careful with any equalisation not to stress the ears. It should be easy and relaxed and if the ears feel even slightly stuck, don't dive!
 

FreeDivingJake

Active Member
Mar 13, 2012
157
12
33
Gainseville, FL
OK I went in for an easy 25ft dive to get used to monofinning again, and as usual my left ear didn't equalize well (thus I'm maxed out at 40ft, but that was on another session). This dive was the first after 2 weeks hiatus from any aquatic activities, so I wanted to take it slow.

Now, my left ear is still ringing now, and the dive was 3 hrs ago. My right ear is fine. The ringing happened right after my last ascend (I was actually on surface when it started). Also my head feels a little full on the left
side. I don't have any pain, fluid drainage or hissing, it's just ringing a little and feels very full / heavy. Already tried yawning, sucking air with nose pinched etc, still nothing.

Any ideas what might happened? I read something about reverse block, but from the description it doesn't look like it (mainly no pain). The more accurate one I see is from MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia: Ear barotrauma

My hearing "loss" now is only for the high frequency (the treble, if you will). I can still hear lower range frequencies, so I don't think I ruptured my drum.

I will see doc on Monday to make sure. I'm almost positive this had happened to all of you one time or another. Can you help sharing how long this went on for you? The hearing loss, etc?

Thanks!
I've had a ringing in my ear before when I forgot to put water in between my ear and my wetsuit. My wetsuit reverse squeezed my ear. It doesn't sound like that's what happened to you though. When that happens you know it, because it hurts pretty bad. I'm definitely following this thread though. I've never had your problem before, but if I do I'll know where to look for help!
 

ViTViT

New Member
Apr 18, 2016
3
1
1
29
London
Thank you all for your comments. It's interesting to read through different experiences - and makes me a little worried. We all seems to be suffering from some kind of BaroTrauma (all with slightly different symptoms).

Does anyone have or ever left like a little 'pop' when you swallowing, especially like a hard swallow? (If I was to pinch my nose and gently blow as if I'm equalising ON SUFRACE it sounds a little like a plastic bottle getting squashed like sound?)
???

HERE IS WHAT HAPPENED:

Diving in a lake/quarry, doing my final part of 'Rescue' dive course/examination.
I was partnered up with someone who had some traumatic ex-diving experience I wasn't aware of and DM taken us through the course thought she was OK to dive. I went down slowly to 8.2m equalise my ears all fine, watching as she descended with DM. Got on the platform and was told to do 'unresponsive diver rescue ascend'
She went first with some help from DM-all fine
*went down again for my turn-but the moment I started step-by-step DM kept interfering, assuring the diver everything OK then telling me to continue with 'ascend' ..?? Which I was confused about because as we would reach upwards to 5m depth DM kept interfering then telling me to continue in which time we would sink back to 8ish m depth (not able to equalise my ear nor the victims. This happened 2 times after which I gave up and just wanted to stop, go up and tell DM to let me do this test with someone who isn't afraid of going underwater. He took her up while I sank like a stone (as I was relaying on her BCD lift which is part of training of taking victim up to the surface) after slight few seconds of panic, I neutralise my buoyancy, equalised my ears, then slowly started ascending. But upon ascending my dive computer started flashing to do the safety stop at 5m (probably because of up-and-downs!)
I stayed for about 1.5min - knowing DM is with the other diver being right below them. Not able to do my full 3min safety stop because DM told me to surface!
After some 30min SI I did all my tasks this time using DM as my victim which went perfect all the way. 1h30m SI, then a fun dive to about 8.3m for 29min. No problems descending or ascending or equalising. As I begin to ascend at the end of the dive, 4m upwards I started to feel almost like a slight pressure change in my ears-NOT painful or uncomfortable in any way...almost like a release of air from my ears. So I went extra slow REALLY taking my time to ascend those last few meters. Came up feeling ok. No Pressure No Pain.

Got out, went to take off equipment and change taking my sweet time of around 1h20min. Was waking back and forth, bending down (noticed a little ear pressure when I bend down), picking up weighty items-all fine.
BUT the moment everything was done and I was walking to take a seat inside the place for end of dive sign off log book I started to feel a LIGHTHEADED. So much as some point I felt I was going to faint!
I sat down, trying not to panic! Looking around at other divers, trying to keep it kool:) while assessing my self how I feel and my changes to see if I should raise an immediate concern with others/DM. Got some water to drink, sat still for good 5-10min while keeping my self busy looking through my log book. My dizziness decreased sitting down but still feeling a little odd! Told my DM about feeling odd and slight ear pressure like feeling-and was told it's OK. (Found it a little hard to do simple tasks like looking at my dive computer to write down its info though due to feeling odd like time slowed down?)
I sat for good 30-40min while others left, to make sure I'm ok. Started walking again but feeling odd like I lost my balance feeling faded dizzy like. Sat in the car for a bit and THAT's WHEN I STARTED TO HEAR THIS HIGH PITCH with HISSING NOISE!!!
***1h40min after I surfaced it all started suddenly!

Went to a local hospital, had my blood pressure, O2 intake, temperature taken-all fine
Sat for 7/8h, finally Doc looked into both my ear checking them and told me he can not see anything wrong, none of my ears seem to be damaged.
By this time I could walk properly and not feeling dizzy.

-consulted with VERY kind and helpful staff of 'LondonDiveChambers' over the phone...
http://m.londondivingchamber.co.uk/index.php?id=dci&page=3

Was told the other diver called them also-so we both ended up with ringing ears! (This diver should definitely be practice diving in a pool! NOT open waters until she feels confident in water-should not have agreed to do that dive with her, my fault also!)
Was told by their Doc. That the 'plastic crunch like sound' was sings of possible fluids buildup in my Right Ear. And that ringing noise can take a good few day to even a week or more!
Not to dive until all problems seem to be gone plus give it another 2 weeks or so to make sure.
And to take it slow, like a shallow pool dive to see how I feel before doing a proper dive.

Went to bed really hoping the next day everything will be ok. Woke up-and YEP!! Ears still ringing!!!!

Also the 'muff-ness' of hearing seems to be less BUT certain sounds-sound ODD!
Like running bath water has an odd sound.
*im guessing my hearing will be odd for some days/weeks????????

Finally I don't feel heavy or full in my ears-not that I can tell anyway. But I do feel like someone stuffed a sponge in my ears muffing my hearing a little.

*The High Pitch Noise ringing noise is supper annoying! (It's like when sometimes you get some noise in your ears and you can't help but to ask person next to you if they can hear something also, and they say NO lol) only this is constant non-stop! :(

***Should I be worried that my right ear has this feel like something is popping inside my ear from time to time when I swallow hard? (I'm not going to do it if I can help it and was told NOT to put any type of pressure on ears and be careful for 'sneezing' 'blowing my nose' 'Definitely not equalising in anyway!!!)
 

ViTViT

New Member
Apr 18, 2016
3
1
1
29
London
My third day now, woke up and seems like the reigning in my ears is a little stronger!
Is that normal???

Also I noticed sounds are bringing to sound very odd!! When I brush my head against a pillow/or rub my hands across my head - the sound is not of hair moving but had this weird sharp noise, as if I can not hear lower/more quiet noises.

Going to see GP today for another check up.
 

sanso

Maker of Educators
Supporter
Nov 15, 2006
1,875
306
138
45
Munich, Germany
wefreedive.com
For the record, this kind of symptom might never go away again.

I have had a tinnitus and significant hearing loss since ignoring equalisation problems during one single dive 2004.
 

ViTViT

New Member
Apr 18, 2016
3
1
1
29
London
Hello EveryOne:)
I'm Glad to say that the 'ringing' in my ears is gone and my hearing is back to normal!! :) !!

So-All-in-All:

The ringing noise increased with each day, while 'muffing' my hearing more and more.
By the 3rd Day the ringing was so loud that even watching TV loudly was no longer taking my attention from the hearing. Each day waking up to an instant ringing and falling asleep was difficult and somewhat stressful as you can imagine hearing the same high pitched notice 24/7!!
On 4th Day thing started to get even weirder. Sounds I was used to hearing were odd/strange/sounded differently. Such as a running water, or an iPhone's txt - instead of being crystal clear was suddenly lower pitch. At this point it was a little scary not knowing if I'd ever hear properly again or if the reigning would ever stop! And reading page after page is web stories of how ringing never stops for some after many years and hearing loss was not helping.

A week had passed..unfortunately still ringing in ears, and even more muffed hearing. I felt like my hearing was a bit like "no longer able to see in full beautiful colour but in black & white only" constantly checking during the day my hearing by playing short tunes I was used to such as a rign tone/txt tone to see how much I can still hear of how it should have sounded.

Towards the end of the second week, I woke up hearing less of high pitched notice and muffness of hearing was not as before. (I got worried that my brain had gotten used to high pitched notice and had began to naturally re-wire it self cutting off my ability to hear at certain level).


However, to much relief, my hearing was beginning to go back to normal. I started hearing the sounds a little more the way they were supposed to sounds:)
Tinnitus and muffness became less and less:)
A total of 2.3weeks before I was able to fully relax and get some much needed rest!
3.5/4weeks before I could safely say I was back to normal.
*at time I would hear some ringing or at list I thought I did-perhaps hearing this high notice for so long, my mind played few tricks on me making me wonder if the noise was really gone-which it was:)

I'm so happy to get my hearing back and can only say: Equalise Your Damn Ears People!!! Properly!!! And on Time!!!!!
*better to do it a little more often then too little!!! And remember that it should feel easy,gentle and without much effort to equalise....if you finding it hard/putting a lot of pressure you maybe be equalising too late OR you are descending too quickly with not enough equalising. Or because your ill/your ears are blocked!
Either way Don't Push It!

***The absolute Most annoying part of this awful experience was that I LOVE piece and quiet!!! Being without it for around 3 weeks feeling like I will never be able to experience that absolute quietness again was really P* me off and I felt regret making that dive BigTime!


After 6weeks I started diving again (Slowely in the pool!!) then in the lake taking my time.

and through out that time ive had 3/4 pro examination on my was each time being told my ears look good, no swelling, no blood, no rupture. When they did pressure test I was told my 'inner' drums seems ok also.

Hope this helps others out there who maybe suffering from the same and truly hope it will resolve it self in day or short few weeks.

Dive Safe!!! And not with idiots like I did:(
 
Reactions: Dan Black

Dan Black

Member
Aug 25, 2017
6
1
13
18
Birmingham
youtu.be
Time to ressurrect this thread again unfortunately

I picked up this annoyingly ring last Sunday (Thursday now).

Feels like it’s at the loudest point since, and I’ve been shoving ibruprofen and ginger tea down me ever since.

My bad ear normally is blocked when I wake up, I think that this is due to swelling from laying flat unlike standing up which naturally would train the ear.

I didn’t suffer any pain from the dive it happened and it took me until I slept in the night to properly realise the ringing. I tested my ears with a dog whistle app and I can still hear frequencies of up to 14hz which was slightly surprising so I’m hoping that the barotrauma wasn’t too severe.

Anyway, I’m hoping it should clear up for my trip to Turkey cause I really want get some diving in in the Mediterranean. I’m going for 2 weeks so maybe by the second week it should be getting better and ready to get equalised again.

Either way if it ain’t ready then it ain’t ready cause I’m planning to be freediving for the long run so I’m not going to push in unnecessarily.

Anyway, I hope to be getting back to this thread soon telling u all how my ears are back to normal.

Happy diving
 
Apr 11, 2018
84
7
13
48
New York
I haven't gone to ENT yet, will make appointment today.

I downloaded a nifty frequency generator. I lost hearing right about 8kHz and above on my left ear. Amazing...

My right ear can hear this crystal clear up to about 15kHz, my left ear can't even detect it. So this is why my left ear can only detect what I call "AM radio" quality while my right is still good for "HD radio".

I read somewhere due to brain plasticity (rewires itself), eventually tinnitus sufferrers like us will simply "ignore" that frequency. The problem is it will ignore literally ALL frequency near and around that frequency range.

P.S. Conversations happens between 4khz - 8khz... Piano keys range from 27.5 - 4186.01 Hz. Mariah Carey hits 220Hz - 3,500Hz.
I can definately concur. The brain *does* eventually learn to "tune" the tinnitus out. I have had this condition for about 20 years now since i dove too quickly to the pool bottom in about 12ft of water as a younger man. I do find i have trouble "fine tuning" conversations out from surrounding noise, but I would attribute that to general hearing loss as i am aging. I would, however, be somewhat encouraged that if the tinnitus is not accompanied by vertigo you will most likely find a gradual improvement. I also notice that when I am not hydrated / rested / etc I hear more noise or it's more noticeable, or after being in very noisy environments (which should remind me not to be in such environments!) :)
 

Dan Black

Member
Aug 25, 2017
6
1
13
18
Birmingham
youtu.be
So it’s me again :)

Did some diving in Turkey (approx 3 days of depth diving sprinkled in the 2 weeks) before the ringing had gone away. I noticed that after the dive session the ringing was definitely quite a bit louder.

To top this off I basically went to the disco every night to absorb those great ear shattering noises so that clearly didn’t help.

The most annoying thing about it though was that I would always wake up with my ear swollen shut and blocked almost like it had water in it however when I stood up the blood would drain from my head and my ear would unblock.

So now I’m back in England and my ear will be staying dry for some time now and I hope that this ringing will slowly start to fade. I feel as if my trip to Turkey has only delayed the healing process and after a month or so my ear should be good to go as it no longer swells when I sleep which is pleasant.

A strange thing which I wasn’t expecting was that I haven’t really suffered too much hearing loss in my bad ear at all, just the ringing remains and the clarity and quality of the sounds are a bit worse but not by significant values by any means.

Anyway I will be making an appointment to see the ENT shortly and will get their diagnosis from them.

Until then I am hopefull that it will heal as I’m only 17 and I look forward to getting back to this thread telling you that I able to enjoy peace and quite again without the ringing constantly being present ;)
 

Freedive N Egypt

New Member
Aug 31, 2018
13
0
1
34
Dahab
freedivenegypt.com
OK I went in for an easy 25ft dive to get used to monofinning again, and as usual my left ear didn't equalize well (thus I'm maxed out at 40ft, but that was on another session). This dive was the first after 2 weeks hiatus from any aquatic activities, so I wanted to take it slow.

Now, my left ear is still ringing now, and the dive was 3 hrs ago. My right ear is fine. The ringing happened right after my last ascend (I was actually on surface when it started). Also my head feels a little full on the left
side. I don't have any pain, fluid drainage or hissing, it's just ringing a little and feels very full / heavy. Already tried yawning, sucking air with nose pinched etc, still nothing.

Any ideas what might happened? I read something about reverse block, but from the description it doesn't look like it (mainly no pain). The more accurate one I see is from MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia: Ear barotrauma

My hearing "loss" now is only for the high frequency (the treble, if you will). I can still hear lower range frequencies, so I don't think I ruptured my drum.

I will see doc on Monday to make sure. I'm almost positive this had happened to all of you one time or another. Can you help sharing how long this went on for you? The hearing loss, etc?

Thanks!
well that is very normal to go through in freediving and i think you should definitely check yourself with an ENT specialist but usually in freediving this is so very normal and it should re-solve on it's own in 3 days max.
cheers
 

Ian Whiting

Member
Aug 17, 2017
1
0
11
35
Australia
I can definately concur. The brain *does* eventually learn to "tune" the tinnitus out. I have had this condition for about 20 years now since i dove too quickly to the pool bottom in about 12ft of water as a younger man. I do find i have trouble "fine tuning" conversations out from surrounding noise, but I would attribute that to general hearing loss as i am aging. I would, however, be somewhat encouraged that if the tinnitus is not accompanied by vertigo you will most likely find a gradual improvement. I also notice that when I am not hydrated / rested / etc I hear more noise or it's more noticeable, or after being in very noisy environments (which should remind me not to be in such environments!) :)
Hi

What if the tinnitus is accompanied with vertigo?
I dive alot and dont remember having any problems equalising during my last dive session. I had been getting swimmers ear previous to this though
Around 2 weeks ago i started getting vertigo and ringing in my ears. ENT said everything looks fine and didnt know what was wrong.anti inflammatorys seem to make the tinnitus less noticeable.

Any ideas? My doc and ENT seem to be scratching thier heads.

I havent dives aince this started and its killing me. Should i stay out of the water?
 

Dan Black

Member
Aug 25, 2017
6
1
13
18
Birmingham
youtu.be
Hi

What if the tinnitus is accompanied with vertigo?
I dive alot and dont remember having any problems equalising during my last dive session. I had been getting swimmers ear previous to this though
Around 2 weeks ago i started getting vertigo and ringing in my ears. ENT said everything looks fine and didnt know what was wrong.anti inflammatorys seem to make the tinnitus less noticeable.

Any ideas? My doc and ENT seem to be scratching their heads.

I havent dives since this started and its killing me. Should i stay out of the water?
Sorry its late but a while back i actually had the same thing happen to me. I didn't get any vertigo but i definitely got the ringing and then i went and dived for 2 weeks with a loud disco every night which certainly made it worse. I'm not sure if it has gone away for u yet but for me i have defo started to notice some improvements in it lately. Bear in mind that this is roughly after 2 and a half months.

So if i could recommend anything just give it time and try and stay out of noisy environments really. That and don't dive as everytime u do ur constantly battering the ear drum with each equalisation.

Hope this helps