Symptoms of ETD can vary from mild to severe and may be different for each person.
Common Symptoms include:
- A plugged feeling in the ears
- Ears feeling like they are filled with water
- Inability to clear or “pop” the ears
- Muffled hearing or partial hearing loss
- Ticking or popping sounds
- A tickling sensation
- Trouble with balance
Eustachian Tube Dysfunction (ETD)
Eustachian tubes are the canals which run from the upper throat and back of the nose to the middle ear. They are situated on both sides of the face and usually remain closed, but open as a person yawns, chews and swallows. Their three principle functions are to ventilate the middle ear, protect it from pathogens and to help drain secretions from the middle ear cleft. They are prone to blockages due to the canals being small. The sensation of having blocked Eustachian tubes is uncomfortable and can be accompanied by hearing problems. Eustachian tube dysfunction is the term for any of these symptoms. Those suffering with the condition can develop a fluid congestion in the middle ear, which dries into a glue like substance. This particular type of Eustachian tube dysfunction is referred to as Otitis media with effusion or glue ear. In some cases Eustachian tube dysfunction can also develop into a middle ear infection.
Regulation of the pressure
Regulation of the pressure in the middle ear is an important mechanism for the treatment if the middle ear disorders. Normally, negative pressure in the middle ear is equalized by swallowing or yawning. If the mechanisms for regulating negative pressure are not fully effective, then after a few weeks gluey secretions develop that may lead to hearing impairment. This condition is caused by Eustachian tube dysfunction and may follow after an upper respiratory tract infection, an episode of acute otitis media or in connection with flying, diving or pressure chamber treatment.
Equalize the pressure
Using an auto inflation device provides the pressure required to open the eustachian tube helping to equalise middle ear pressure. The middle ear is thereby ventilated, any effusion can be cleared and symptoms relieved.
If the Eustachian tube becomes blocked, the negative pressure within the middle ear will draw the eardrum inwards. A middle ear effusion can develop and if not treated will become glue like in consistency.
By using an auto inflation device the negative pressure will equalise.