Choosing earrings suitable for newly pierced ears

When your ears are first pierced, they are susceptible to infection. This is because you have made a wound in your earlobe, which allows the bacteria on your skin to get into the flesh. Your body will try to heal the wound, and you need to wear earrings that will allow the skin to heal closed whilst the small piercing remains.

Here's how to choose the best earrings for newly pierced ears so that they heal fast and don't get infected.

Choosing the metal and style of earrings

The best earrings for newly pieced ears are made of gold. Gold is an inert metal, which doesn't react or corrode in oxygen. This means that it won't affect your piercing and will allow it to heal safely. Choose the highest carat gold earrings you can afford - the higher the carat the more gold there is in it. It's also safe to wear platinum or silver earrings - but bear in mind that platinum is much more expensive than gold.

Never ever put cheap earrings into newly pierced ears. Most cheap earrings are made from copper or nickel. Nickel can cause dermatitis, and copper oxidises, turning black or green. Any jewelry made from iron may rust. Given that blood has a certain amount of oxygen in the red cells, stay away from anything that oxidises.

When picking the style of earrings you need to avoid anything that may rip the newly pierced ear. Therefore heavy dangly earrings are out, as are hoops that can get caught in your hair and pull. Instead go for small stud earrings with a butterfly close at the back. Don't have them on too tight so that the blood flow in the ears isn't stopped.

Care for newly pierced ears

Make sure you clean your earrings and ear lobe each night with a disinfectant. Sebum or grease will accumulate on the back of the earring and bacteria will thrive in it, so clean out the earring every evening. If you are finding that the lobe is still infected, try using alcohol or hydrogen peroxide to clean it - that should zap anything living there.

If the ear lobe is swollen, red and oozing, visit your doctor, as the infection will be in the lobe itself rather than on the surface. If you are in this situation, stop wearing earrings immediately.

On average, newly pierced ears take around six weeks to heal. If they haven't healed after that, consult your doctor.

Related page: green amethyst earrings

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