Most people who have balance disorders such as Meniere’s disease or an ear disorder such as tinnitus will be able to travel by air without any problems. However, some aspects of flying can cause problems for some people.
Choosing the Right Seat
Getting the right seat in the plane can make a big difference when you have a balance or ear disorder. It is a good idea to inform the airline of your condition when you book your tickets. You will then be able to request a seat away from the engines if you are concerned that the loud noise could exacerbate problems such as tinnitus. If you suffer from vertigo it is also a good idea to request an aisle seat as you may feel better if you can’t see out of the window. It will also be easier for you to get up and move around or reach the toilets if you feel sick.
On the Flight
Once you are on board the aeroplane there are a couple of things you can do to ensure the flight is as comfortable as possible. It is important to stay hydrated, so make sure that you drink plenty of water and other fluids, but try to avoid anything alcoholic as it can be dehydrating. You should also bring some chewing gum or suckable sweets to use during the take off and landing as this can help to equalise the pressure in your ears. Swallowing or yawning can have a similar effect if you don’t have anything with you and the most important thing to remember is to avoid napping at the start and end of the journey. When you are asleep, your ears won’t be able to adjust as well to the change in pressure as the aeroplane takes off or lands.