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Author Topic: Why Do I Get Earache On A Plane ?  (Read 1878 times)

Offline neilep

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Why Do I Get Earache On A Plane ?
« on: 29/07/2015 14:58:31 »
Dearest bods Of Scientific Knowingness,

As a Sheepy I of course travel the whole wide world as a jet setting wooly four legged ruminant,

look, here I am on a plane (First Class of course !....to not be first class would associate me with the proletariat and I'm not having that innit ?)


Me On a Plane Just Moments Ago !!

What I need to know is Why Do I get Such Awful Earache ? and especially when descending ?

Some people don't get any earache at all !!...why's that then ?


If ewe can help me with the answer then ewe can be happy in the knowledge that ewe have sorted me out in an answering-question-kind-of-way !


Thanking ewe for your kind consideration in this matter.


neil

If ewe provide an answer to the ache on a plain
Perhaps I can avoid it from happening again !



 

Offline alancalverd

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Re: Why Do I Get Earache On A Plane ?
« Reply #1 on: 29/07/2015 16:41:07 »
The eustachian tubes connect the inner ear to the nasal passage so that the atmospheric pressure is equalised across the eardrum when the weather changes or you walk uphill.

The problem is that a simple tube would allow your ears to fill with snot and cocaine as you walk downhill, so whilst the equalisation is very rapid during ascent or depressurisation, the tube closes down to a small aperture on the way down, and if you have any infection, it may close completely against an increasing ambient pressure. This produces a pressure differential across the eardrum which can be painful or even damaging. 

Human aviators can pinch their noses and blow, or sing (Stuka pilots were encouraged to shout in a dive, but it scares the bejabers out of the passengers if I scream Auf Wiedersehen Tommy!, Tallyho!, Geronimo!, or Tora! when approaching Liverpool). It's a bit more difficult for thumbless sheep but a good Baa might clear the problem. If not, there is a surgical solution:

http://figshare.com/articles/_Insertion_of_a_coronary_stent_into_the_Eustachian_tube_of_heathland_sheep_/1250727
« Last Edit: 29/07/2015 16:46:51 by alancalverd »
 

Offline neilep

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Re: Why Do I Get Earache On A Plane ?
« Reply #2 on: 29/07/2015 17:51:33 »
The eustachian tubes connect the inner ear to the nasal passage so that the atmospheric pressure is equalised across the eardrum when the weather changes or you walk uphill.

The problem is that a simple tube would allow your ears to fill with snot and cocaine as you walk downhill, so whilst the equalisation is very rapid during ascent or depressurisation, the tube closes down to a small aperture on the way down, and if you have any infection, it may close completely against an increasing ambient pressure. This produces a pressure differential across the eardrum which can be painful or even damaging. 

Human aviators can pinch their noses and blow, or sing (Stuka pilots were encouraged to shout in a dive, but it scares the bejabers out of the passengers if I scream Auf Wiedersehen Tommy!, Tallyho!, Geronimo!, or Tora! when approaching Liverpool). It's a bit more difficult for thumbless sheep but a good Baa might clear the problem. If not, there is a surgical solution:

http://figshare.com/articles/_Insertion_of_a_coronary_stent_into_the_Eustachian_tube_of_heathland_sheep_/1250727


Thank ewe very much alancalverd

I am in debt to ewe for your kind and worldly wise informative response. ewe of course mean EWEstachian tubes !

Seems like i need to revisit my operatic duties as a Countertenor many eons ago and apply them to the full descent when nearing the end of my flights !

Thank ewe once again for your erudite response.

hugs and smishes !!





 

Offline evan_au

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Re: Why Do I Get Earache On A Plane ?
« Reply #3 on: 29/07/2015 23:50:15 »
A more subtle form of earache is due to the very high sound levels on a plane - loud enough to scare a sheep used to munching in a quiet pasture. I wear sound-absorbing earplugs on plane flights, and that gives my ears a rest from the noise. It also slows down the rate at which air pressure returns as the plane descends, and may assist with the more acute air-pressure problems described by alancalverd.

These days, some people buy noise-cancelling earphones, but these won't help ewe with the air pressure.

If ewe wish to do an experiment, put a noise-absorbing earplug in just one ear, and take it out when you leave the plane. I did this once (because I could only find one earplug), and sounds then seemed quite asymmetric for a while. (Don't do this if you are responsible for flying the aeroplane!)
 

Offline neilep

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Re: Why Do I Get Earache On A Plane ?
« Reply #4 on: 30/07/2015 19:59:54 »
A more subtle form of earache is due to the very high sound levels on a plane - loud enough to scare a sheep used to munching in a quiet pasture. I wear sound-absorbing earplugs on plane flights, and that gives my ears a rest from the noise. It also slows down the rate at which air pressure returns as the plane descends, and may assist with the more acute air-pressure problems described by alancalverd.

These days, some people buy noise-cancelling earphones, but these won't help ewe with the air pressure.

If ewe wish to do an experiment, put a noise-absorbing earplug in just one ear, and take it out when you leave the plane. I did this once (because I could only find one earplug), and sounds then seemed quite asymmetric for a while. (Don't do this if you are responsible for flying the aeroplane!)

Ow !!  Thank ewe evan_au That's very interesting. I can guess in the absence of earplugs and noise cancelling headphones I could always just pluck some wool and give that a try. Thanks again.
 

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Re: Why Do I Get Earache On A Plane ?
« Reply #4 on: 30/07/2015 19:59:54 »

 

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