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Can I take decongestants to prevent barotrauma?

Decongestants can be a useful way to decrease the risk of ear barotrauma. Taking decongestants half an hour before diving or flying can prevent nasal blockage that prevents air from traveling to the ear through the eustachian tube. However, some people should not take decongestants. Children, men over forty, and pregnant women should avoid decongestants, especially if they contain pseudoephedrine.

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