The ears are an empty cavity, with tiny hairs which vibrate to pick up sound. This air and movement show that the ears are a vata dominated part of the body. They are, however, prone to imbalance of any dosha, and surprisingly Kapha earaches are the most common. This is why children have earaches a lot, but tend to grow out of it. This is also why it is common to get an earache after swimming, when the ear becomes full of water (Kapha).
Earaches can be viral, fungal or bacterial. If an earache is cause by a cold and congestion it is most likely to be Kapha. Hot, red, swollen, itchy ear ache tends to be Pitta, and Vata ear ache is caused by exposure to wind or cold. More often than not more than one dosha is involved.
General treatment of earaches includes alterative herbs, which are blood purifying, taken internally, or administered through the ear or nose. Mint tea (infused not boiled) is excellent internally, whilst a few drops of ginger juice, or garlic infused sesame oil are best for application directly into the ears. Neti can work effectively as it actually creates a vaccuum which helps to draw out any toxins from the greater sinus cavity, not just the nose. With neti be especially careful not to blow your nose afterwards because if you block your nose and blow the water will be pushed deeper into the sinuses-aggravating the problem. Especially as we grow older daily oiling of the ears is very useful.
If you find loud noises very disturbing this indicates a low white blood cell count, commonly caused by anemia, dehydation or low blood pressure (usually Vata and Pitta).