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Avoid Diving In Under Aquatic With Cold Or Sinus predicaments

Effects of Pressure on Underwater Divers & Avoid SCUBA Diving with Cold or Sinus Issues

It must be realized that changes in volume caused by changes in pressure, as shown previously, are grater the nearer the pressure is to atmospheric pressure. Therefore, the effects of pressure changes in the body caused by changes in depth are more noticeable when the diver is near the surface and accidents are much more likely to happen there.

Any gas-filled spaces will be affected by the change of pressure by Boyle’s Law. A pressure difference as small as 0.05 bar between the inside and outside of a body cavity can damage body tissue.

The gas-filled spaces in the body are Sinus, Ears, and Lungs. On occasions, gas may be present in the stomach and intestines, but, since the walls of these parts are flexible, no effect will be felt, except some discomfort on ascending to the surface.

Gas-filled cavities within the teeth may also occur if regular dental inspection is neglected. The diver may experience pain and discomfort during ascent and descent, as a result of cavities within the teeth.

Sinuses 

There are cavities, usually six or seven in number, in the bony structure of the skull. Their main function is to lighten the skull, but they also give resonance to the voice, as can be noticed by the change in voice in a person with a severe cold or catarrh. Their positions are shown in 👇
sinuses-cavities-diving-skeleton
sinuses-cavities-diving-skeleton
The sinus cavities are lined with a mucous membrane similar to that in the nose and, to provide means of equalization of pressure between the cavities and the mouth, are connected to the back of the nose and throat by narrow canals through the bone of the skull.

This means that normally there is a free flow of air to the sinuses from the back of the nose and throat. However, if the canal through the bone becomes blocked by mucus or swelling of the tissues, the flow will not occur. In these circumstances, the volume of air in the sinuses contracts an increase in external pressure, causing pain in the form of headaches and possibly damage to the sinus lining as a result of the lining wall bulging and forming blisters.

These may burst causing the cavities to fill with blood. If that should happen, there will be a decrease in pain and the diver will feel more comfortable. However, on the ascent, the air in the sinuses will expand and may force the blood out through the canal, resulting in a nose or mouth bleed.

Diving should be avoided when suffering from a cold, catarrh, or throat infection, otherwise, sinus trouble can be expected.

Conclusion:

The effects of pressure on the body, especially near the Surface, can cause damage to gas-filled spaces like sinuses, ears, and lungs. Blockage can lead to pain and potential injuries, emphasizing the importance of avoiding diving with cold sinus issues.

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