When traveling on an airplane, it is recommended for passengers not to fall asleep. Although sometimes tired of waiting for departure time, if you sleep when the plane take off then your eardrum is at risk of damage.
Why is that? When the plane is taking off at high speed, there is a drastic change of air pressure. This condition must be prepared by the body in a conscious state, and if you sleep then you can not prepare yourself.
If the body is not ready for drastic air pressure changes, the eustachian tube in the ear can be damaged. The small tube’s function is to equalize the air pressure inside the ear with air pressure outside the ear.
“Rapid changes in height affects the air pressure in the ear. This triggers a vacuum in the eustachian tube that makes the ear feel blocked and sore,” said a British pharmacist, Angela Chalmers.
According to her, when the plane take off then passengers are advised to often swallow. This is to make the tube work well and not experience air vacuum, as reported by Express page.
For children or infants and toddlers, give them a little drink after take off to restore the ear condition. Or you can ask them to yawn.
The US National Library of Medicine says that if the ears hurt due to air pressure, then a number of health problems will arise.
You may experience headaches, ear infections, damaged eardrums, even nosebleeds and diminished hearing ability.
“Swallowing or yawning can open the eustachian tube and allow air to flow in or out of the middle ear,” she explained again.
Can also chew candy, and blow the nose while closing both ears tightly.