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Ear Popping Treatments


Talk with your doctor about the best treatment plan for you. The following measures can also prevent the occurrence of barotrauma. Treatment options include the following:

Pressure Relief

To relieve the pressure in your eustachian tube, you can:

  • Suck candy
  • Chew gum
  • Yawn
  • Inhale and gently exhale through your nose while pinching your nostrils shut, forcing air through the blocked eustachian tube and possibly opening it.


To relieve nasal congestion and open your eustachian tube, especially if you are suffering from allergies or have a cold. Your doctor may recommend that you take some medications, including:

  • Decongestant nasal sprays
  • Oral decongestants
  • Oral antihistamines
  • Pain medications


Your doctor may prescribe antibiotics to prevent an ear infection if the barotrauma is severe.


Surgery is usually a last resort. If your eustachian tube does not open with other treatments, surgery may be necessary to relieve the pressure. Your doctor will make a small cut in your eardrum to equalize the air pressure and also remove any fluid that might be blocking the tube.

Oxygen Treatment

Oxygen should be administered immediately if you have pulmonary barotrauma. The oxygen is either administered through a mask over the face or by a tube near your nose.

Recompression Therapy

If you have decompression sickness, you need to be in a high-pressure environment so that the air bubbles that have formed shrink and break up in your blood. Some medical centers have hyperbaric chambers (also known as high-pressure or recompression chambers) to provide a high-pressure environment.

The Divers Alert Network offers information on these chambers.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2022 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.

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