Pierced Ears: What You Need to Know

Almost every woman I know can tell you what the “magic age” was in her home—meaning the age that mom and dad would allow her to get her ears pierced.  Most will also recall begging and pushing to do it sooner than allowed so that she could feel grown up and open up a whole new world of jewelry possibilities.

The journey to pierced ears is a process; however that’s probably best left to girls old enough to handle the hygiene requirements involved. Failure to properly care for newly pierced ears can lead to an infection that is painful and could recur. Piercing should be performed by a technician who uses sterile techniques and equipment, and the initial earrings used should have gold or hypo-allergenic posts. Beyond that, ask yourself if your daughter could follow the guidelines for care:

  • Earrings should be left in place for 6 weeks after piercing to allow the channels to heal.
  • After washing hands, both sides of the earlobe around the hole should be cleaned with rubbing alcohol, and the post of the earring should be turned three times. This routine should be performed twice daily.
  • During the day, one should refrain from touching the ears, especially with dirty hands. This introduces bacteria to the open wound and increases the chance of infection.
  • Dangling earrings should be removed before sports to prevent an injury or tear to the earlobe.
  • After the initial healing time frame, earrings should be removed each night to allow the hole to “breathe.”

If your daughter is mature enough to follow these rules, she may be ready to get her ears pierced. If not, you’d probably be wise to wait another year or two and revisit the question.


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