The ear is an organ of Vata.
It is susceptible to Air and Ether (space) which are Vata elements.
When Vata is disturbed by the airflow, ie. the passages are not clear from sinus blockage or infection, the cochlear cannot correctly sense the otolithic crystals and properly ascertain balance.
Oil is the best way to eliminate the dryness of Vata. We use warm sesame oil (place bottle in a cup of hot water) because of its properties of heaviness & wetness to lubricate the ear, decrease Vata & allow proper air flow to restore balance.
The full technique is called Karna Poorna and is typically done preventatively in Pancha Karma (5 cleansing Ayurvedic Actions parallel to Shad Karma – 6 actions in Yogic Cleansing).
Karna Purna is Excellent for:
Until one gets used to the idea of oiling their ears, if you are in the middle of clearing a sinus infection/cold or if you are not able to receive a Karna Purna treatment, I recommend putting some oil on a Q-tip (keep stock bottle clean) & swabbing the inner ear gently. Switching swabs & repeating on the other side.
Once your cold/sinus is gone, you can do a more full treatment with a few drops inside the ear, massaging it around, coating the inner ear well.
Here is a short video demonstrating how Karna Purna is done. The practitioner first massages the outer ear with warm sesame oil and then pours a few drops of oil into the ear. The person lays on their side throughout the treatment so the ear can absorb the oil.