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Old 11-23-2013   #31
Worcestershire, Midlands, UK
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 52
I hate going over without nose plugs. Even going through a meaty stopper can force water up the nose. But going upside down is the worst thing for me. I can't seem to close off my nasal passages and water ends up going down my throat! So I don't really care how I look, I wear nose plugs as a matter of course.

I also wear ear plugs now too. But make sure you get them custom fitted or they will be next to useless. If you have any doubts as to why you should wear ear plugs, this is what the resultant operation looks like to get rid of surfers ear…

I have been told by people who have gone through this that it is every bit as painful as it looks and that they never go out without ear plugs any more.

And incidentally, if you think surfers ear only occurs from going underwater a lot, think again! It can result simply from being around lots of water spray (i.e. going through rapids even without going over) and from being exposed to cold wind a lot.

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Old 11-24-2013   #32
Abron Cabron
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Santa Fe, Nuevo Mexico
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 594
WTF. that is gruesome. I had no idea the surgery was that invasive. thanks for the reality check. teensy little bit of cold water in the UK, i would imagine. and some urban water too. yikes.

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Old 11-24-2013   #33
KSC's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,032
I think they have less invasive surgical options now, but I gather surgery is pretty gnarly regardless and can cause unpleasant conditions like tinnitus. If you paddle regularly in cold water without ear plugs it seems like you're playing Russian Roulette with your ears, yet I still see lots of people out there that do it. As noted above, it's not just playboaters who need them. I've been using Docs Proplugs forever, but just recently ordered a pair of custom plugs through fellow paddler Dr. Molina (Parker) in hopes of getting a more comfortable fit. Looking forward to checking those out.

I'm not sure what this has to do with nose plugs though.
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Old 11-24-2013   #34
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Lakewood, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,234
I use a plug. I have sinus issues so it's not worth getting the flush. And KSC can confirm that when I flip in Tunnel w/o a nose plug, I come up looking like a I think you said Walrus, right Kevin?

On the river, I can abandon who I am and what I've done. However brief it lasts, while on the river I am nothing important and everything insignificant. I am flotsam, and happy to be so.
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