When my ears are being a pain in the butt!!!! I take a 12 hour Sudafed to open the sinus a little - not the one with caffiene or any "super strong pack"
I also often do a sinus rinse the night before, its not pleasant but it helps loads
I never take Sudafed when I'm diving. It's got known side effects on mood and anxiety. When I've used it in the past it makes me noticeably short-tempered and impatient. I know other divers that have said the same. There's a good chance of me making bad decisions underwater when I feel like that so I'd rather not touch it. I believe there's been some discussion of it potentially lowering the threshold for a CNS tox as well.
Caliph Hamish Aw-Michty Ay-Ya-Bastard, Spiritual leader of Scottish State in England