How to Pop Your Ears
There are a few common reasons that ears feel clogged or plugged. These may include allergies, head colds, pregnancy and changes in air pressure from traveling by plane or scuba diving.
But the good news is that clogged ears can usually be unclogged by simply popping your ears. This is because your Eustachian tubes have the ability to equalize pressure between the inner and outer ear.
Swallowing is a complicated process that involves multiple areas of the nervous system. It’s the only way that food and liquid can get from the mouth to the stomach. It also prevents food and liquid from choking or entering the lungs, where they could cause pneumonia.
It normally occurs in three phases: the oral phase, the pharyngeal phase, and the esophageal phase. The tongue moves food or liquid from the mouth into the back of the throat, where a flap called the epiglottis covers the windpipe to redirect the swallowed material toward the stomach. Then the esophageal muscles push the food down into the stomach.
But sometimes our bodies have trouble regulating the air pressure in the ears to equalize with the pressure outside. This can happen when you’re sick or changing altitude, such as when you’re flying, scuba diving, or hiking a mountain.
That’s when you’ll feel a sensation like your ears are clogged. That sensation can be relieved by yawning, chewing gum, or by taking decongestants.
Yawning and swallowing activate the muscles in the back of your nose that open the Eustachian tube, which is a thin tube from the nose to the middle ear. These muscles also force the eardrum to pop, which drains any pressure or fluid that’s trapped inside your ear.
When you’re flying on a plane or going scuba diving, the air pressure in your ears can change quickly. That can cause you to feel like your ears are clogged up.
If this happens, it can be very annoying. You’ll often find yourself looking for ways to pop your ears to get relief.
One of the easiest ways to pop your ears is to blow your nose. This action opens up the eustachian tube, which helps to stabilize pressure and protect your middle ear.
It’s also a good way to prevent congestion, which can lead to ear problems. Congestion can be caused by allergies, a cold, or an infection.
Another simple method to pop your ears is to swallow something. Chewing gum, for example, can help equalize the pressure in your ears.
The action of chewing can also help to remove excess fluid from your middle ear and prevent the buildup of pressure in your ears.
If you’re still experiencing a clogged ear sensation after trying these methods, you might have an underlying problem that needs to be addressed. It’s important to see a healthcare provider at once if you experience significant ear pain or have difficulty hearing.
Yawning is a stereotypical reflex, characterized by a deep inhalation of air with a powerful stretching of the jaw and trunk muscles. This stretch increases blood flow to the face and neck, which may help cool the brain.
A large inhalation can also slow the heart rate, which may make it easier for you to think clearly as your brain cools down. This process could be helpful when you don’t get enough sleep or if you have a headache.
However, the exact function of yawning remains unclear. For years, scientists thought that yawning was a way for the body to sense low oxygen levels in the lungs and to bring in more air. This hypothesis was disproven in 1987.
Some people believe that yawning is an unspoken form of communication that shows empathy. This could be why it’s so contagious.
Yawning has also been linked to social bonding. A recent study published in PLOS One found that chimpanzees were more likely to catch a yawn from another chimpanzee they knew than from an unfamiliar one. This is an interesting finding that suggests that yawning is a sign of empathy and familiarity.