Children’s Ear Piercings; Four Ways to Prevent Allergies

You have decided to pierce your child’s ears, but after a little research, you discovered that if improper piercing equipment and materials are used, piercing tiny sensitive ears actually comes with a fair share of potential risks. Other than the risk of developing potential infections, transmitted blood-borne viruses and tissue damage, young children are also more susceptible to developing nickel allergies from unsuitable ear piercing materials.

Before you rethink your decision, know that the right piercing method and suitable equipment virtually obliterate the chances of side effects. Therefore, where you choose to have your child’s ears pierced makes all the difference. Still, there is more to consider when it comes to nickel allergy.

Here are a few common questions about nickel allergy:

Is Nickel Allergy Common?

Nickel allergy is a fairly common condition that can be developed at any age, affecting approximately 10% of the population. However, young children are more likely to develop a nickel allergy. The most recent North American Contact Dermatitis Group (NACDG) 2005-2012 data demonstrates that 25.6% of 883 children patch tested had a clinically relevant response to nickel. Preventing early exposure to nickel will consequently reduce the chances of ever developing a nickel allergy. Once a nickel allergy has developed, the only way to treat it is to avoid contact with any object (or food) that contains nickel.

How Can I Tell That My Child Is Allergic to Nickel?

Kids will develop an allergic reaction hours or even days after the skin was exposed to earrings containing nickel, and the reaction can last several weeks, even if the skin is no longer in contact with the earrings.

Nickel allergy symptoms include:

In severe cases, other symptoms can include:

When deciding to pierce your child’s ears, preventing nickel allergy should be a number one priority. Here are four ways you can prevent nickel allergy and pierce your child’s ears stress-free!
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1. Know Your Gold

Many people believe that as long as you use gold earrings, there is no chance for infection or developing a nickel allergy. However, that could not be any further from the truth. Gold jewellery often contains a significant amount of nickel or brass. 14k to 22k gold is safer, but does not negate the presence of other metals such as nickel.

2. Consider Medical Grade Titanium or Plastic Earrings

At a fraction of the price of gold earrings, medical grade titanium or plastic earrings are the most hypoallergenic, and safest earrings you can find on the market. Made of the same materials used for surgical implants, these types of earrings will not harm your child’s sensitive skin.

3. Opt for Medical Piercing

The medical piercing method ensures that your child’s ears will be pierced with sterile, surgical grade, stainless steel instruments. Medical professionals will pierce your child’s ears safely and to a medical standard of care and hygiene. Moreover, the method does not use a piercing gun, which can damage tissue and increase the risks of developing a nickel allergy.

4. Remember That Your Child Should Be Wearing Medically-Safe Earrings Even After the Healing Period

Many parents choose medically-safe earrings to pierce their child’s ears, but unfortunately do not continue to purchase earrings made from medical-grade materials once the child’s ears have healed. It is important to remember that earrings containing even a small amount of nickel can trigger an allergic reaction, even years after the ears have healed. Medical grade titanium or plastic earrings are affordable as well as being the safest, most hypoallergenic options for your child’s little ears. As an added plus: they come in a beautiful, wide range of colors and sizes for kids and adults alike! Need more information regarding our safe piercing method that eliminates any chance of your child’s skin coming into contact with any equipment or material containing nickel? Contact us today.

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