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WARNING: Don't use ear plugs!

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by daniel1948, Apr 13, 2009.

  1. daniel1948

    daniel1948 ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Spokane, WA
    439
    58
    28
    I am very sorry to learn of your experience. However, in my case my eardrums were not punctured. Apparently I had some over-extension or inflammation, as indicated by severe pain when I put the drops in afterward. But within hours the pain was gone, and the following day I was able to resume diving with no discomfort, and use the drops with no pain. I was lucky.

    This is the conclusion I came to. Apparently there are people who disagree and who have used these devices without problem. But from now on, I'll just accept the water.
     
  2. ScubaSteve

    ScubaSteve Wow.....what a DB

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Acton, Ontario
    23,370
    4,415
    113
    Follow the lead of your ENT Specialist and/or DAN and do what you require to safely stay in the water. Permanent damage is never an acceptable consequence to diving in my books so be safe but do what you must to keep diving.
     
  3. munselln8

    munselln8 Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Charleston, SC, USA
    55
    5
    8
    Just curious...if the "vented pro plugs" allow water in the ear after 20" then what is the point in wearing them? Not being facetious..but I've never done a dive (granted I have limited experience) less than 30'. What is the value of earplugs that let in water? I too, have problems with my ears and have been wondering about whether or not one can dive with earplugs, but if they let water in then why bother?
     
  4. RU4SKUBA

    RU4SKUBA Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: West Coast
    340
    19
    0
    I have used Doc's at 130ft without any problem, but they do cause a bit of outer ear discomfort with a hood.
     
  5. vladimir

    vladimir ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location:
    33,666
    40,628
    113
    There is no value to wearing them, as far as I can tell. There are some highly dubious theories that they ease clearing by some mechanism that is, at best, poorly explained.
     
  6. diver_doug

    diver_doug Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
    485
    77
    0
    You're not stupid for using earplugs. I've used docs pro ear plugs down to 80ft with no issues. I don't need them anymore, but still occassionally use them when the water is really cold but I don't feel like wearing a hood. I'm not sure what to make of the issues you had, but I sincerely doubt they are common. If anyone is reading this and considering pro plugs, don't be scared off by the OP's thread--they work well. Just make sure you get the one's with the pinhole in the middle as they are the only proplugs recommended for SCUBA.
     
  7. diver_doug

    diver_doug Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
    485
    77
    0
    Some people hate the feeling of cold water rushing into their ear (e.g. me). Although proplugs do allow water in after about 20ft or so, the water slowly trickles in and isn't as "shocking" to my ears. Not sure if they help with equalization once water comes in but they, for me, are still of some benefit.
     
  8. rollerboi

    rollerboi Barracuda

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Pleasant Grove, Utah (USA)
    446
    1
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    Though they let water in, they reduce the rate it comes in, thereby having the benefit of allowing the ear to get accustomed to it, as well as to warm up the water from your body heat. At least, that's my understanding of it.

    I've tried 'em and at the first sign of ear discomfort, I ripped them out and went on with my dive. Not my thing, I guess.
     
  9. TSandM

    TSandM Missed and loved by many. Rest in Peace ScubaBoard Supporter

    36,349
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    To the OP -- I have problems with water retention in the external canal after diving, and although it will eventually clear, I prefer to get it out of there as soon as I can. (And no, there's nothing abnormal about my canals, and I have no cerumen buildup.) What I do is to roll a piece of soft toilet paper into a wick, and gently insert it into the canal until it begins to absorb the water. Kleenex will do as well. Don't use napkins; they are too stiff.

    Anyway, this technique gets rid of the water immediately and relieves the annoying sensation. Done with soft materials and gently, it should not present any hazard.
     
  10. daniel1948

    daniel1948 ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Spokane, WA
    439
    58
    28
    Please note that this is an old thread, resurrected by someone who just wanted to know what was the intended purpose of the earplugs. I tried them because I don't like the feeling of water in my ears after the dive. I had a very serious complication (described in my post #1) and so posted the warning. Apparently, from the replies that followed, some people use them without difficulty.

    From talking to other divers, most folks, like me, dislike the feeling of water in the ears, but they tolerate it. So I just decided to suck it up, get the water out as well as I can (the kleenex method described above, hopping on one foot, ear-dry drops, etc.) For me, the plugs are not worth the risk. It was a very scary incident.

    To munselln8, who asked the question that resurrected this thread, some folks use them to limit the amount of water that gets in. In my short diving career (less than 2 1/2 years, and 90-some dives) I have never actually met another diver who used them. I will not use them again.
     

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