Aural Fullness, Tinnitus, Hyperacusis — The Trifecta: Can I Fly?

Discussion in 'Support' started by Matthew Shane, Jul 9, 2019.

    1. Matthew Shane

      Matthew Shane Member

      Location:
      Toronto
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/15
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools
      Hi community - hopefully you have room for one more.

      I'm about a month in, following an unprotected bout with some power tools. Been pretty constant tinnitus/hyperacusis/fullness since, though there is considerable day-to-day (hour-to-hour!) variation in intensity. On good days it's probably only a 2 (can hear in a quiet room), on bad days, more like a 6 (can hear over moderate room noise). I know many on here are worse; I feel for you.

      My question actually pertains to the aural fullness I'm experiencing. I've had three doctors (one ENT) look in my ears and say they're normal, and I've had two audiologists perform pressure tests...which come back normal. The eustachian tubes are fine... etc., etc. But, of course, I have this feeling of fullness, and can't unclog them.

      So, my question: can I fly? Normally with blocked ears you don't want to. But this isn't a normal block. Does anyone have experience with this? There seems to be no literature or knowledge on the topic at all.

      Any suggestions/advice appreciated.

      -Matt
       
      • Hug Hug x 1
    2. florian_89
      Bugridden

      florian_89 Member

      Location:
      Oetz, Tirol
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Music Speaker got me Hyperacusis, only very slight Tinnitus

      Dear Matt,

      I had an acoustic shock 4 years ago when hyperacusis with pain started. The accident only affected the left ear.

      In the beginning I thought my ear is just clogged. It tried to open it with closing my nose and push ear through the Eustachian tube.
      Well my eardrum goes off, but the clogged feeling is almost always there.

      Today 4 years later, my ear is still clogged. Sometimes, it feels more sometimes less. It bothers me a lot. Since I have it only on one side ,I feel unbalanced.

      The best feeling I can get for my ear is to do sport, when the blood circulates it feels better then normal.

      I flew since my trauma several times, wearing ear plugs. It is ok to fly.

      Best wishes

      Florian
       
      • Like Like x 1
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Matthew Shane

      Matthew Shane Member

      Location:
      Toronto
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/15
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools
      Thanks Florian. Super helpful.

      So it *feels* clogged, but isn't. So odd. What is it that causes the sensation then?

      If others have also flown with this clogged sensation, would be happy to hear about it.
       
    4. florian_89
      Bugridden

      florian_89 Member

      Location:
      Oetz, Tirol
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Music Speaker got me Hyperacusis, only very slight Tinnitus

      Dear Matt,

      This i a good question i tried to answer myself a lot of times.

      No ENT could give me the answer.

      I don't want to give any wrong informations out here but I want you to listen to this story and my assumptions - I am no doctor, just a patient.

      My story
      When I had my accident whit noise, I felt a sharp pain in my left ear and a immediate suction reaction on this side. It felt like something was pulling from inside on my ear and the left side of my face.

      I did a cranio sacral therapy and my therapist told me my whole left side is very very tight. She could feel it, it was not noticable on an MRI.
      The therapist tried to "loose" the side with some kind of micro massages.
      Unfortunately this lead to another problem, somehow another nerver near my tongue got involved, now the left side of my tongue is constantly pulling inside.


      Since the intensity of the clogged feeling and the tongue pulling is going hand in hand with noise consumption I think that the trigeminal nerve plays a major role in the clogged feeling sensation



      I hope somebody else, with this feelings could give his/her story out here.


      Greetings
      Florian
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    5. Contrast

      Contrast Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Retrovile
      Tinnitus Since:
      late 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      injury from noxious noise
      The ENT outruled ETD with a test.

      Noise damage can cause the sensation of blocked ears, it happened to many people on the forum.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    6. Mister Muso
      Disappointed

      Mister Muso Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2007 and spiking since April 2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud concerts & bruxism/ETD/who knows
      I hope someone can address the question of flying with these symptoms. I have the same, and am due to fly in a month's time.
       
    7. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Matthew Shane

      Matthew Shane Member

      Location:
      Toronto
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/15
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools
      Yes, but this isn't an answer, just a fact. The question is: how does noise damage lead to this feeling of fullness? Is the ear actually full? Or it just feels full? Is it nerve-related (as Florian hypothesizes)? Or is it muscular (as I've hypothesized)? Or something else entirely? The answer to this is important, as the solution may be out there, but different in each case.
       
      • Good Question Good Question x 1
    8. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      It is what you feel after damaging your inner ear.

      Do you know whether the plane you will fly on was made by Boeing or a Airbus? Airbus planes are very quiet. If you wear hearing protection, you ought to be fine. Boeing planes are louder, but you will also probably be ok. You will want to get a seat as close to the front of the plane and as far from the windows/walls of a plane as possible.
       
      • Like Like x 1
    9. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Matthew Shane

      Matthew Shane Member

      Location:
      Toronto
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/15
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Power Tools
      Thanks Bill. I'm certainly concerned about the noise from the plane, but I'm *more* concerned that flying with ears that aren't pressurizing properly could cause a burst eardrum. That's why I'm trying to figure out if I'm truly blocked, or just feeling like I am.
       
    10. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      I have been reading this site for the past 29 months, and I don't recall anyone having a burst eardrum (or any other problems besides a spike in T) as a result of flying. I know I would have remembered something like that.
      I am pretty sure that you just feel like you are, but keep in mind that I am not a doctor.
       
      • Useful Useful x 1

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