Flying with Tinnitus? Here’s How to Cope

If you suffer with tinnitus and have a trip planned in the near future, then you should be reassured that most people with tinnitus do not suffer an adverse effect on their condition when flying. In the unlikely situation that flying in an airplane does worsen your tinnitus, it’s most likely that these effects will be both minor and temporary. We’ve put together some top tips to help make flying more comfortable with tinnitus.

tinnitusTip #1. Avoid Using Earplugs:

Taking earplugs along on your flight can be a good idea if you’re hoping to sleep and drown out all the background noise. However, bear in mind that doing so could cause the tinnitus noises inside your ear to become louder and more pronounced.

Tip #2. Book Your Seat at the Front:

When booking your seat on the plane, try and get a seat that is as close to the front as possible, since this is the point that is furthest away from the engine and therefore quieter. Making sure that your seat is located anywhere in front of the wings will give you an advantage.

tinnitusTip #3. Chew Gum:

Many people who suffer from pressure in their ears when flying will chew gum or suck on a boiled sweet to help deal with this sensation. Chewing gum or enjoying a sweet will encourage you to swallow more often, therefore opening the Eustachian tube and allowing air to enter the middle ear during take-off and landing.

Tip #4. Use a Nasal Decongestant:

Even if you are not suffering from a cold or flu, consider taking along a nasal decongestant which will help keep your airways open for a better release of pressure.

Tip #5. Make Use of the Entertainment:

tinnitusIf there is in-flight entertainment provided, then you should make full use of this by focusing on the movie or music. This can be useful for helping you to concentrate on something else and take the focus away from your tinnitus. Along with that, entertainment may also be useful for helping you relax. Minimizing stress and worry as much as possible can help to alleviate the symptoms.

Tip #6. Stay Awake for Landing:

If you prefer to sleep during a flight, then make sure that you set an alarm to wake you up just before the plane is about to land. Since this is the part of the flight where your body has a harder time adjusting to the pressure changes, it’s important to be awake.
Get in touch with us today for helpful advice on dealing with tinnitus!

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Tinnitus Cognitive Center

Stephen Geller Katz, LCSW-R
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