There is much debate among parents as to when is an appropriate age for piercing a child’s ears. Some opt for getting it done as early as infancy, while others prefer either not at all or at a much later date. Doctors don’t cite any medical reason not to pierce, although they do caution that there are some risks involved in doing so. The choice really comes down to when the parent thinks their little girl is ready to take the plunge.
Here then are ten tips for deciding what age is best for your baby:
- Tugging – Since it is best that the ears not be tampered with, a child should have outgrown any tendency she might display for tugging at her ears. This will avoid the risk of the earring being torn off or getting infected.
- Pain – A child with a low pain threshold probably won’t appreciate the added pain in her life that an ear piercing would bring. Painkillers are not typically used since their injection is usually more painful than the piercing itself.
- Allergies – You should wait until you’re certain that your child doesn’t exhibit any allergic reactions to metal. In any case, it’s recommended that only 24 k. gold or surgical steel be used.
- Work – Caring for a baby is a lot of work under the simplest of circumstances. You may not care to add another layer of car on top of your other parental duties by having to clean and look after ear piercings as well. Decide whether you’re up to the added work and are willing to submit the baby to unnecessary risk of infection.
- Fidgeting – Younger children can be more unpredictable and may not be able to sit still long enough for an ear piercing. Determine whether, or when, your child will be able to resist fidgeting while the work is being done.
- Consuming – One of the risks involved with ear piercings at a very early age is the possibility that an earring can be pulled off and ingested. Infants or toddlers who are prone to tugging at their ears would not make good candidates for early piercings.
- Expectations – Ask the parents of children who have had their ears pierced to share their experiences and recommendations. Find out what to expect before getting the piercings done.
- Activities – Ask yourself if your child’s typical activities are compatible with ear piercings. That is, is it something that can become a hazard during playtime? Does your daughter show any interest in ear piercing or other feminine trappings?
- Doctor – Ask your family doctor/pediatrician what s/he recommends as far as an appropriate age. Also, your doctor may also be able to recommend where to have the piercings done, and many will do ear piercings themselves.
- Grow up – There’s always this suggestion to alleviate all doubts and concerns: Let your child grow up and decide for herself whether she even wants her ears pierced, and when she’d like to have them pierced.
Though this is a much debated topic, ear piercing has been around for a long time. It is up to each family to determine if it is the right choice for their child.
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