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4 Effective home remedies for treating ear popping 

Ear popping is a concept I am aware of being a frequent flyer but never gave it much thought. For me it’s something I experience every time I travel on the plane. Whilst others don’t even notice this happens to them, to some it can be a painful experience. We’ve all been on flights with kids and as soon as the pressure changes they start crying. It’s not always that they are hungry but because the ears haven’t popped yet.

So what do I mean by popped? What home remedies can help with ear popping?

Here comes the science-y stuff! Well the ear has three parts: inner, middle and outer ear. It’s in the middle ear that you will find the Eustachian tube which is connected to the back of your throat. When the Eustachian tube is blocked due to thickly liquid or mucus from a cold or cough it can be painful.

ear popping

4 Effective home remedies for treating ear popping 

For frequent flyers will remember when air pressure changes whilst flying your ears taken a moment before you hearing a “popping” sound. This is due to the Eustachian tube equalizing the pressure between the outside and inner ear. But for some this doesn’t happen quicker enough and can be quite painful as I recently discovered. The air pressure change whilst flying caused my eardrums to overstretch as they tried to compensate for the change in the environment. This caused me great pain and the following are some of the remedies I tried and you could use too.

Chewing Gum 

Chewing gum is one of the quickest ways to pop your ears but sometimes it doesn’t work fully. For me when I chewed the gum it only partially popped my ears granted it was a less painful process. An old wives tale swears by chewing gum throughout the flight and that will help your ears. I have since tried this on other flights and it has worked.

Yawning 

It certainly does a faster job of popping your ears than chewing gum but again it depends on the person. For one long flight this didn’t work for me but for another flight it worked amazingly. Yawning helps change the pressure build up in your ears and helps it balance again.

Sucking on a hard-boiled sweet 

OK!! this one a friend said always works for her and I tried it but unfortunately didn’t fully unclog my ears. Apparently the sucking helpings enough pressure to pop the ears and regain its balance. Whilst it’s not something I don’t mind doing since I love sweets it’s one I would try last.

Drinking water

Many recommend drinking water to pop your ears as one of the best remedies. Drink a huge gulp of water and pinch your nose at the same time whilst twisting your head. I did test this theory and was slightly confused as to how it would work. This process did help me pop one side of my ear after that awful pain and theethree above helped pop the other.

If you have an ‘Eustachian tube dysfunction’ or ETD please reach out to your General Practitioner (GP) and seek medical help. The remedies I have recommended are what ‘collectively’ worked for me when my ears wouldn’t pop after my flight. I have tried some of these again and they have ‘individually’ helped at different times.

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45 Comments

  1. Jessica Spencer
    April 24, 2017 / 1:14 pm

    Great post my ears always really hurt on the plane so I’ll defiantly be trying these

  2. April 21, 2017 / 3:19 am

    When I was a kid and used to fly a lot, my mom would always give me gum or mentos right before the plane lifted off, to stop the ear popping. It’s something I still do! Yawning is the worst though!

  3. Kira L Curtis
    April 10, 2017 / 10:47 pm

    Yawning has got to be the best I would’ve thought! Although whenever I fly I always go and buy some fruit pastels to chew on!

  4. Stephanie
    April 10, 2017 / 9:52 pm

    That’s interesting to hear, I am taking my kids on their first flight this summer, so they may suffer. I will pack some gum and sweets just in case.

  5. Blair Villanueva
    April 10, 2017 / 3:41 am

    I prefer drinking water than chewing gum. Chewing gum makes me bloated 🙂

  6. April 9, 2017 / 10:57 am

    Chewing gum tends to help me but then like you said it does depend on the flight as well! Great tips x

  7. April 9, 2017 / 7:59 am

    My mum once burst her ear drum while flying and it ruined the holiday. Such an awful experience but these are great tips for suffers. x

  8. beautykinguk
    April 8, 2017 / 7:01 pm

    Some great tips and on any flight be it long or short haul I really suffer with my ears and am yet to find a solution to ease the pain having tried chewing, the boiled sweet and drinking and yawning…

  9. Baby Isabella
    April 8, 2017 / 2:33 pm

    I have a very short Eustachian tube which is prone to getting blocked. As a result I suffer from loads of ear infections 🙁 some fab tips here x

  10. shoshana sue
    April 8, 2017 / 9:11 am

    Drinking some kind of fluid has always worked best for me and when I used to travel with my kids I would do the same with them too.
    I will try out yawning next time.

  11. Živilė Dap
    April 8, 2017 / 2:52 am

    Thank you for sharing this! I always get ear popping when flying, and chewing gum or consciously trying to yawn works the best!

  12. Le Coin de Mel
    April 7, 2017 / 11:07 pm

    Chewing gum is the one that always works the best for me.

  13. April 7, 2017 / 9:23 pm

    These are my go to tips when going on a plane, I am forever sucking on boiled sweets! x

  14. Chloe Griffiths
    April 7, 2017 / 8:49 pm

    great tips i usually use these when I’m on a plane xo

  15. Melanie Edjourian
    April 7, 2017 / 7:52 pm

    I use all those techniques when we are on a plane. I also recently discovered some great ear plugs that work well too x

  16. Jayne
    April 7, 2017 / 6:42 pm

    The boiled sweet remedy has always worked for me 🙂 x

  17. Kara
    April 7, 2017 / 4:36 pm

    Sucking a boiled sweet seems to work for me and another I learned when I scuba dived is to pinch your nose and then try to exhale as hard as you can through your nose – it works brilliantly

  18. Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes
    April 7, 2017 / 3:17 pm

    Chewing gum or boiled sweets always works for me, interesting to read the science bit!

  19. Laura
    April 7, 2017 / 2:21 pm

    LOVE this post. I hadn’t heard of drinking water as a remedy but I have heard of sucking a boiled sweet before- I do that on planes during take off and landing xxx

  20. April 7, 2017 / 12:20 pm

    I hate ear popping, especially when you’re on a plane! Boiled sweets always works for me xx

  21. Newcastle Family Life
    April 7, 2017 / 9:21 am

    my mum used to always give us hard boiled sweets for take off when we were younger and they always worked well xx

  22. David Elliott
    April 7, 2017 / 5:31 am

    Three out of the four I have heard about. I didn’t realize merely sucking on a hard boiled tread would help. That’s a kind of cool one.

  23. April 7, 2017 / 1:31 am

    My husband suffers terribly from ear pain and altitude so these will definitely help him – I like the chewing gum one – I think he’d like that too!

  24. April 6, 2017 / 11:27 pm

    Ugh, ear popping is the worst! I find that yawning usually works for me more quickly than anything else.

  25. Natasha Mairs
    April 6, 2017 / 8:33 pm

    yawning works for me. but drinking water has never worked for my ears but has worked for getting rid of hiccups

  26. Ola Broom
    April 6, 2017 / 7:49 pm

    Yawning and chewing gum usually work for me. I’m assuming a hard boiled sweet is “hard candy”. What an adorable term for it.

  27. April 6, 2017 / 6:38 pm

    This is very useful. My husband suffers really badly from his ears popping when we fly. We always take boiled sweets with us and they seem to help 🙂

  28. Ayana
    April 6, 2017 / 6:26 pm

    I hate ear popping on an airplane! I can’t imagine poor kids that go through it. I haven’t flown with my son yet and was always planning to nurse him during takeoff and landing but right now he probably won’t be nursing anymore by the time we go anywhere by plane!

  29. April 6, 2017 / 6:01 pm

    I suffer from this when on a plane and it’s landing – hurts so much! I need to drink more water like you said!

  30. April 6, 2017 / 5:42 pm

    I have always found that yawning and chewing gum to be the most effective methods for me. I can imagine it is quite painful if you cannot get that pressure to equalize, so having these methods to help do so are helpful for those who have problems with it.

  31. Melanie Williams
    April 6, 2017 / 4:48 pm

    Jaw movement and yawning is prob the most effective here. Sweets are good for flights too 🙂 x

  32. Briana Marie
    April 6, 2017 / 4:17 pm

    Yawning works like a charm for me! I could never get the gum to work. Lol. But I’m all in for trying a good lollipop!

  33. April 6, 2017 / 4:14 pm

    great ideas, I use to yawn, but may be drinking water is more polite !

  34. twinklingtina
    April 6, 2017 / 3:26 pm

    yeah chewing gum is a good way, i think. Its recommended to chew gums while take off and landing of flights. I manage with yawning though.

  35. April 6, 2017 / 2:37 pm

    I never knew, that drinking water could help to pop your ears, I drink bucket loads of the stuff, especially on the tube and i find my ears pop on their or should I say become blocked!

  36. Deimarys Colon
    April 6, 2017 / 2:34 pm

    These are great tips. I have done the chewing gum but never works for me.

  37. Maro Akamatra
    April 6, 2017 / 2:06 pm

    I close my nose and blow inside my mouth. I like your suggestions too!

  38. Divya Budhraja
    April 6, 2017 / 1:26 pm

    wait! What’s a hard-boiled sweet? I’ve never heard of that before. Is it just a hard candy like a Jolly Rancher?

  39. April 6, 2017 / 1:25 pm

    I’ll keep these in mind. I do the chewing gum one, but I’ve never tried the sucking on a sweet one!

  40. April 6, 2017 / 11:38 am

    Yep I do all of those. I hate it when I get ill and need to pop my ears, sometimes it is even worse afterwards!

  41. April 6, 2017 / 11:37 am

    I swear by yawning but I also have a habit of yawning when my jaw blocks from a migraine, so I try not to over-do it because of the negative association. Literally anything triggers a migraine for me – even excessive yawning haha.

    Hard boiled sweets never works for me either – I was convinced I was doing it wrong cause everyone says it works haha!

  42. April 6, 2017 / 10:41 am

    I never fly without my boiled sweets (or polos for the kids so they don’t choke) but it doesn’t always work. I’ve sort of got used to being a bit deaf for a couple of hours after flying. Never thought to try drinking water.

  43. April 6, 2017 / 10:25 am

    I find yawning really helps me when I need to pop my ears x

  44. April 6, 2017 / 9:34 am

    Great tips I usually just pinch my nose & blow. Although I have heard it’s possible to pop your eardrums dong this so will give these a try next time.

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