I have lived with the popping and ringing for over 20 years. The fluid problems always bring on the challenges of balance due to the inner ear function of maintaining our balance.
If you have ever ridden in an airplane you may have experienced the popping before, but now, it is magnified by 100.
The best thing to do is to leave the popping to your body and let the pressure in your tubes adjust themselves. If you really can't stand it, and wish to control the pressure on your own, you can pop them OUT, making noises louder, by holding your nose and blowing lightly, or you can pop them back in, by holding the nose and forcing a sniff.
Doing this too often will irritate the eardrum, which is why I advise you to let your body adjust the pressure on its own.
Also, a good ear lavage (cleaning) can do wonders not to mention how good it feels to get all the junk flushed out.
Prevention doesn't need an ounce of proof any more than disasters need a warning.