Using ProEar diving mask helped a bit. Let's say if it takes me 20 minutes to descent to 40 feet, using it takes 10-15 minutes to descent. For me, taking decongestant doesn't help much and risk of reverse block is high with multiple dives.
I read the Diver's Guide to Ears and understood it by heart.
These tips helped me pull it through:
- BEFORE THE DIVE:
- Keep eustachian tubes open. Pop ears several hours before diving, equalizing every few minutes above land. (i had to keep it open for a week to make sure)
- A dose of Claricort 250mcg tablet (anti-inflammatory drug) a day, taken an hour before the dive.
- Two sprays on each nostril of Drixine an hour before every dive.
- Avoid dairy products since it increase mucus production.
- Fresh clean air helps control rhinitis or other allergies.
- DURING THE DIVE:
- Use descent line to control descent rate.
- Try several equalization techniques. When blowing through the nose with pinched nose doesn't work, try Toynbee Maneuver. With your nostrils pinched, swallow. (yes it works! previously, i don't pinch while swallowing)
- Most importantly, equalize at 1 foot below surface, then at 4, 6, 8 10 feet. (consciously equalizing at 1 foot below surface did the trick!)
My dive buddies all noticed I descent faster than usual nevertheless, after fourteen dives in four diving days I felt some pain on the outer ear canal. A dose of claricort for a day or two helped.
These tips helped solve my equalization problem during our diving trip in Palau and Peleliu, Micronesia. Hope this post will help you too.