Piercing Problems -
Embedded Earring Backs
When I work in my clinic, I sometimes see patients with earrings that have become "stuck" in their ears. On closer examination, the backing has become embedded in the ear lobe. This is more common than you might think and is often caused by poor quality jewelry that lacks important safety measures that can make a big difference.
Here's what you need to consider for a safer piercing:
1. Be sure you do your research. I advise many of my patients to avoid mall shops as these environments are not clean or even hygienic.
2. Jewelry containing nickel, gold, cobalt, epoxy, etc for ear piercings can cause irritation and lead to infection. Piercing with hypoallergenic materials, such as medical plastic or titanium, reduces the risk of developing an infection.
3. The earring back is key to a successful piercing. When air can circulate around the backing, this will promote optimal healing. Your piercer should be able to select an earring post that is right for you and long enough to allow for adequate air circulation.
4. The backing should have other safety features. It should not be able to move freely on the earring post as this can lead to the earring being squeezed on too tightly resulting in an embedded backing. Earring backs that are encapsulated and fixed onto the tip of the earring post are safer and reduce the risk of having an embedded backing.
5. Follow your piercer's aftercare instructions. It's important that you take care of your piercing and contact your health provider if it becomes irritated or infected.