Reverse block occurs when a diver is ascending and the air inside the diver’s body expands. The pressure exerted by water is directly proportional to the depth. I.e. it increases with an increase in depth. The air that had remained pressurized inside the body expands as the diver is ascending.
The expansion of air that is trapped in the diver’s ears causes the reverse block. He or she will encounter acute pain and discomfort due to a reverse block. In serious conditions, it can lead to Ear Barotrauma. You need not bother too much about it though. Since the instructors are trained to give the best diving experience.
The increase in the popularity of scuba diving has resulted in new scuba diving centers around the world. Therefore, you do not have to travel to another corner of the world to enjoy it. Scuba diving in Kerala has become a reality with the establishment of an excellent scuba diving center here too.
Causes of Reverse Block
Inexperienced Diver – A newbie diver, who is not much aware of buoyancy and possible indications of the reverse block can fall prey to the problem. The diver may not have adequate knowledge about monitoring depth gauge while ascent. This leads to unmonitored and careless ascent and may cause a reverse block.
Ill health – A diver may be facing nose congestion, cough, and cold. Consumption of medicines to reduce the congestion and enable easy pressure equalization may not have the intended result. As the medicine will be used up quickly at high-pressure conditions underwater. Besides, the overconfident divers may neglect guidelines towards ensuring safe diving. Ear infections are another probable reason for the reverse block.
Flouting Directives – The diving instructors will deliver strict guidelines and directives for safe and enjoyable diving. However, a section of the people may not be interested in such instructions. They will not pay much attention to the precautions. Such people may panic even during a minor discomfort and act haphazardly. Thus resulting in a reverse block.
Symptoms of Reverse Block
There are no firm symptoms for the reverse block. The diver may feel ear squeeze and minor pain at the beginning of the reverse block. However, both the reverse block and failure in equalization can cause pain. Hence, it is difficult to distinguish the reason for the ear squeeze and pain.
You can ascend or descend to identify the reason. Experienced dive instructors will brief you regarding the problems that may occur and the corrective measures before the dive. They will also observe you identify any kind of inconvenience to you during the dive.
Precautions to Prevent Reverse Block
Follow Proper Procedure – The procedure while descending and ascending during a scuba dive has been prepared after meticulous studies only. It contains the safety precautions to be followed during the entire session. Careless attitude and non-observance of regulations can cause a reverse block.
Give proper attention to the instructor. Clarify all the doubts before scuba diving. The proper compliance of procedures will make your diving enjoyable and prevent any problems.
Avoid Dive When You are Unhealthy
We neglect cough, cold, nose congestions as minor illnesses. Although those do not require any medical consultation or treatment, the congestions can foul play during scuba diving. The medicines you consume for relieving congestion will be used up faster than in normal conditions, as the pressure underwater is very high. This can cause pressure equalization problems in the year.
Careless and Quick Ascend
Careless and quick ascend can lead to a reverse block. You must observe your physical conditions while ascending. Stop and indicate it to the dive instructor in case you feel any difficulty. The instructor will brief the hand gesture, with your hand parallel to ground (palm downwards) and shaking mildly, beforehand. Learn and by heart the gestures before entering the water.
Nowadays the scuba diving centres take proper precautions to prevent it or any other discomfort to the divers. They will pass down proper instructions for the divers. The instructors will monitor the dive constantly to confirm that you are having a safe and enjoyable dive.
Erstwhile, only a few certified scuba diving centres were available in the country. Presently there is a scuba diving centre in Kerala and many other parts of India with qualified instructors. You can explore the world underwater safely, by scuba diving in Kerala.