Getting babies’ ears pierced can be a controversial topic. For some parents, they may see it as a way of getting a painful experience over with at a young age so their child won’t remember when they’re older, while others may prefer to have their child wait until they are old enough to make their own decision about ear piercing. Many cultures consider piercing babies’ ears to be customary, and others may shun the idea of piercing ears at such a young age.
Whether you’re for or against piercing your baby’s ears, there are many things you should take into consideration before you should make this decision.
There is no “appropriate age” for piercing your baby’s ears, as this varies across cultures. For many Latin American parents, newborn ear piercing is common. And although the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children get their ears pierced when they are able to take care of the piercing themselves, there doesn’t seem to be much harm in piercing children’s ears at such a young age.
For specific information on the best age to get your baby’s ears pierced, it’s best to ask your doctor. He or she may recommend waiting until your baby gets their first round of vaccines to strengthen his or her immune system.
Make sure that the earrings you choose for your baby’s first earrings are appropriate for infants. This means taking things like material, size, and design into consideration.
Ear piercing is a form of body modification and as such comes with its own set of risks.
Make sure you get your baby’s ears pierced by someone who has experience with infants. Oftentimes, the best place to find a proper piercer is through your doctor. Some doctors will even offer to do the piercing themselves.
Be aware that many commercial ear piercers in shopping malls use piercing guns instead of needles to pierce ears. These are much too harsh for infants and are not suitable for baby ear piercing. Additionally, piercing guns are not sterilized and can present a risk of infection to your baby. Look for a reputable ear piercer who uses sterilized needles and has experience working with infants.
The actual piercing procedure is very quick, but keep in mind your baby will cry during and after. However, this pain is minimal and is comparable to getting a shot. To ease the pain, you can give your child a small amount of ibuprofen or acetaminophen (with your doctor’s permission).
The piercer will use a sterilized needle to pierce each ear. Afterwards, they will clean the pierced area and insert the earrings of your choice into your child’s ears.
Proper aftercare is essential for the healing process. Your child may start touching his or her ears after they’re pierced, which can increase the risk of infection. Makes sure you follow basic aftercare instructions and gently clean your baby’s earlobes with hydrogen peroxide or alcohol several times a day (after washing your hands, of course!) . You’ll also want to gently rotate the earrings periodically per your doctor’s instructions.
Most piercers will recommend that you keep the earrings in for 6-8 weeks. When you’re ready to swap them out for a new pair, be sure to keep up with good cleaning habits and use earrings made of hypoallergenic materials such as sterling silver, 14K gold or surgical steel to prevent allergic reactions.
Piercing your baby’s ears is a personal decision, and something that you should not take lightly. Consider all the important safety factors and find a reputable piercer before making an appointment, and stay in touch with your doctor to discuss any potential risks that are specific to your child.
When you’re ready to shop for your baby, hop over to InSeasonJewelry.com to browse our collections of baby earrings and other baby jewelry. We offer a variety of baby earring styles in sterling silver, solid gold and much more.
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