Ear Piercing and Infections

Most girls get their ears pierced with beautiful diamond or gold studs as kids. But, because a needle is piercing your body, there is also the possibility of an infection from the procedure. Here are ways to avoid a nasty infection.

You can get your ear pierced just about anywhere these days. Some stores that sell earrings will do it right on the spot for you. With such wide access, there is also a chance of infection from so many people using these services. Ear infections, just like other ones, can be unpleasant and cause damage if untreated.

The best way to deal with them is to avoid them in the first place. Here are a few tips to do that.

* Use a reputable piercing person – These are your ears or your child’s ears, so take care of them. Ask about how they sterilize their instrumentation for the piercing. If you are unsure about small shops, ask your doctor to do it.

* Do not remove the earrings – They will tell you or give you a list of instructions for ear piercing care after the procedure. To keep the hole from closing up or getting infected, leave the initial studs in for about a month and a half until the earlobe heals around the earring.

* Turn the earrings – Turning the stud on a daily basis prevents the ear tissue from healing to the earring. You only have to turn it once.

* Clean your ears regularly – You can dip the ear in hydrogen peroxide. It will fizzle and turn white in the presence of infection. If the ear is tender (and it will be), use a cotton swab to drip peroxide around the stud front and back. This removes any dirt.

* Examine the ear each day – Look at the ears to be sure there are no problems. With small children, they may begin to tug at the earlobes if they are itching or irritated. Signs of an infection will include redness, itching and swelling around the piercing. The ear may also be tender to the touch. A doctor can take a look at the ear and determine if the infection can be cleared up without removing the earring and allowing the hole to close.

* Avoid cheap earrings – To avoid any type of reaction from the earrings themselves, try using genuine 24-carat gold studs, silver or even nickel earrings. Gold or silver plate can peel off and irritate or infect the ear.