Flying tip to avoid common issue of ‘aeroplane ear’ – ‘protect your hearing’

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Unfortunately almost every passenger will have felt the unpleasant sensation of popped ears on a flight. Passengers can also struggle with the high levels of noise on a plane.

Katie Ogden, training manager of ReSound in North-West Europe shared her top tips to protect ears with

She said: “When a plane is taking off, the noise in the cabin on the plane can be as high as 105 decibels, with sound over 70 decibels able to cause damage to hearing.”

However, there are a few things passengers can do to protect themselves and their hearing on a flight.

Katie said: “Sit at the front of the plane. One way to protect your hearing is to sit as close to the front of the plane as possible.

“Any seats positioned before the plane’s wings are further away from the engines and the elements of the plane that will generate the most noise throughout the flight.”

Passengers will sometimes have to pay more to sit at the front of the plane as this is often where the premium extra legroom seats are.

However, it could be worth it to protect passengers’ ears from excessive aeroplane noise. If passengers don’t want to pay more, they could just select a seat as near to the front of the plane as possible.

Katie added: “Noise cancelling headphones are another great way to protect the delicate parts of the inner ear during a flight from the engine noise.

“They’re also good for blocking out general noise from other passengers on board too, if you want to shut off and relax during the journey.”

Noise cancelling headphones are available from most major electrical retailers as well as large supermarkets.

They can help protect a passenger’s ears and help a traveller settle down with a good movie to pass the time.

Katie said: “Yawning, swallowing or sucking on boiled sweets. The classic piece of advice given to anyone who struggles with pressure in their ears during flights, but it does surprisingly work.

“Aeroplane ear, that feeling of your ears popping, occurs when the air pressure inside of the ear and the pressure outside are not the same, preventing the eardrum from vibrating normally.

“The eustachian tube which regulates air pressure in the ear can’t usually react fast enough, but by yawning, swallowing or sucking a boiled sweet, the tube opens and allows the middle ear to receive a larger amount of air.”

Passengers could pick up a tin of boiled sweets at duty free which could help them enjoy a more comfortable flight.

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With endless culture, gorgeous beaches and weather to die for, Greece is a great choice both for romantic getaways and family trips. Wander the historical streets of Athens and Thessaloniki or head to an island to soak up the sun – the choice is yours.


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Katie also offered some advice for passengers heading off on a sunny holiday this year.

She said: “Whether it’s a drip in the pool on holiday, or swimming in the ocean, if you suffer from tinnitus it’s always best to protect your ears around bodies of water.

“Wear earplugs. In order to not exacerbate your symptoms, wearing earplugs is a simple and easy solution to protect your ears for when you go swimming.

“By wearing earplugs no water will be able to penetrate the ear canal and you will eliminate the chance of infection or your tinnitus symptoms worsening.”

For more tinnitus tips visit Resound. 

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