Banking on whether the decision to get your baby’s ears pierced is cosmetic, cultural, or simply a preference, the best places that maintain the highest standards of hygiene and will use sharp hollow needles that are painless and safer than the piercing gun is at a tattoo parlor or your baby’s pediatrician’s office.
You can ask for recommendations or the best place to start your search from your dermatologist, local jeweler, or a kiddie salon for infant piercing services.
If you decide to have your kiddo’s ears pierced, here are a few of the best places to consider If you’re looking for other medical professional services outside your norm that follow proper care when piercing and during the healing process.
The best places to get your baby’s ears pierced safely
Below are some of the best places to get your little girl’s ears pierced safely. Just be sure to check with the Better Business Bureau and do your search before making an appointment.
1. At a tattoo parlor
While this may not be a traditional place to think of to take a child, this is likely the best place outside of the medical office for a baby’s ear piercing experience because reputable tattoo parlors have trained piercers that are trained on proper techniques, sterilization, and must adhere to proper health and safety protocols.
Be sure to conduct some research on what’s allowed in your state and the preferences and restrictions of your local tattoo parlor because some states require a photo ID of minors and other credentials for liability purposes and record-keeping before any piercings.
With a consenting adult, young babies, toddlers, and teens are generally able to head to a tattoo parlor for an ear-piercing appointment that might cost you anywhere from $20-$40 and up for this service.
2. At your pediatrician’s office
Often referred to as medical ear piercing, pediatric ear piercing is offered in some pediatrician’s offices and might be the most comfortable for parents, but not all pediatricians offer this service.
While this might not always be the case, if there’s a pediatrician in your area that offers ear piercing services, you may need to be a client of theirs to receive these services.
Some research will help you determine what’s available in your locality, but pediatricians who offer ear piercing services are trained in piercing techniques and are experts in wound management and care, and it might cost you between $75-$100.
3. At Walmart
Some select Walmart stores offer ear piercing services using the Inverness system, a piercing gun, and proving starts from $10 and up.
Ideally, a hollow needle is best for most piercings due to techniques, healing, and sterilization standards, but the Inverness system, which uses a gun for piercing, can be used on babies’ ears.
4. At Claire’s
Known for their kid’s jewelry and accessories, most malls in America have the iconic Claire Stores, also known for the place to get your ears pierced at the mall because they offer free ear piercing with a purchase of a starter kit listed at $18 and over.
It’s very safe to get your baby’s ears pierced at Claire stores because they offer general piercing services for both adults and kids using pre-sterilized individually packaged kits, and they require babies to have had their eight-week current DTaP shot.
5. At the Piercing Pagoda
This is another iconic place to get babies’ ears pierced at the mall because they offer children ear piercing services for babies as young as two months and above, and they too require a current DTaP shot.
The technicians at piercing Pagoda receive annual training and retraining to keep up with the best and most hygienic services, and they offer short post piercing style ideas for kids below three years of age.
They use single-use, sterilized, and pre-packaged piercing tools and allow for complementary follow-up if you have any concerns with your baby’s progress.
Baby ear piercing safety tips
If you do decide to pierce your little girl’s ears, follow these quick and easy tips to help you keep her and her piercings safe from infections.
1. Wait until she’s at least three months
Some health care providers advise that skipping the infancy stage and waiting until your little girl is at least three months old is the best cause of action. While infections from piercing are rare, they can still happen and cause a fever in your baby. Fevers can easily become serious in babies under the age of three months.
Just like any other injection, expect some tears as an ear piercing can be painful for your baby. Still, you can bring along a pacifier or their favorite toy to help reduce crying and anxiety and offer comfort afterward.
2. Be mindful of choking risks
Any jewelry, earnings included can be a choking hazard for babies and toddlers if they become loose. You should frequently check to ensure your baby’s earnings are securely in place with the back stoppers fastened.
You could also purchase earrings with locking backs that lower the risk of your baby getting a hold of them and probably throwing them in her mouth.
3. Use real gold earrings
According to the AAP, you should only use real gold earrings on your little girl. They are a little expensive than normal earrings but also carry a much lower risk of infection and inflammation than other metals.
Clean the entire area surrounding the piercing with rubbing alcohol on a piece of cotton about two to three times per day and gently rotate the earnings but avoid changing the settings for the first 4-6 weeks.
4. Follow care instructions to a T
After your baby gets her ears pierced, make sure you are precise on all aftercare instructions.
You should understand how to clean them, how and when to turn them, and how long to keep them in before switching pairs. Being careful about the aftercare to prevent infections.
You should also avoid touching the piercings except when you are cleaning them with clean hands while keeping an eye out for redness and swelling with pus that lasts longer than 24hrs after the initial piercing was initiated.
If the area around the baby’s piercing feels warm to the touch or your baby develops a fever of 100.4 or greater, then the piercings may be infected.
How do you pierce an infant’s ears?
While there may be various methods for piercing adult ears and other body parts, the most ideal way to pierce a baby’s ears is with a needle. An experienced piercer, nurse, or pediatrician will advise further on the best practices and not with a piercing gun you’ll find at most jewelry stores.
Much like with immunization, you’ll be asked to hold your baby still while a certified professional places a mark on the earlobe as a guide on where the hole should go, followed by sterilization and then piercing with sterile equipment then earrings are placed in the hole created.
An experienced piercer will wash their hands and put on gloves that they will change often if they have to touch anything else in the room aside from their sterile tools and equipment that should all be inside individually sealed sterile packages.
Do they numb my baby’s ears before piercing?
Generally, it’s always an unpleasant experience for little ones when needles are involved.
Some pediatricians will prescribe or apply a numbing cream to the ear upon piercing. Still, if you are worried about the discomfort during piercing, you can bring along an ice pack to help numb the area before and provide relief afterward.
Do babies need shots before getting ears pierced?
According to experts, parents should follow the recommended two doses of tetanus vaccine, which is administered to babies at around the age of 4 months according to the CDC vaccine schedule, which provides additional protection to a baby in case of an infection.
When piercing a baby’s ears, the most significant aspect is working with a trusted professional and following the proper care process and hygiene during the healing process.
Baby ear piercing is a relatively common procedure, so you should have plenty of options in your area, but most importantly, do careful research on reputable venues around you that offer these services.
Remember, just as important as where you get your baby’s ears pierced is how you care for it afterward.
Be sure to closely oversee and follow up the aftercare instructions and keep a close eye on the little one’s ear piercings in the weeks following the procedure to ensure proper healing and lifetime enjoyment of their earrings.