Eustachian Tube Dysfunction, or ETD, involves blockage of the tube leading from your middle ear to your throat. The Eustachian Tube can be susceptible to blockage for several reasons. But with early diagnosis, is easily treatable at home or with a brief doctor visit. The Eustachian Tube helps regulate ear pressure, and when blocked can be uncomfortable and somewhat painful. Occasional ear barotrauma isn’t uncommon, especially in places with high altitude. However, if you experience ETD frequently or the symptoms persist and worsen, medical attention is necessary.
1. What are your Eustachian Tubes?
Several tiny tubes make up the inside of your ear. This helps carry sound from the outside to your brain. As you breathe, the tiny tubes, especially the eustachian tube in the middle, fill with air, helping conduct sound vibrations. When you open your mouth or yawn, you allow the tubes to open and fresh air to come in. Your Eustachian Tube is constantly filled with air and needs a consistent fresh supply. If it becomes clogged or blocked, you can experience discomfort and difficulty hearing. Air flow is critical to the ability of your ear’s tiny bones to vibrate with sound, which your brain then translates.