Do you like to wear jewelry? A beautiful necklace can be the perfect addition to a nice outfit. A homemade bracelet from a friend might be one of your favorite things to wear. Perhaps you have a ring or two that you like to wear to give your hands a little bling?

Some people prefer to wear their jewelry in their ears. But we’re not talking about sticking cotton swabs in your ear and calling it jewelry. Nope. We’re talking about pierced ears!

Do you have pierced ears? Many girls look forward to the day when they’ll be old enough to get their ears pierced. Pierced ears aren’t just for girls, though. Many boys and men choose to pierce their ears, too.

One thing many children worry about when thinking about piercing their ears is whether or not it will hurt. If you like your earlobes just the way they are, the thought of poking a sharp metal object through them might make you shiver.

Don’t worry, though! Today’s modern ear piercing machines make the process of getting your ears pierced a quick — and fairly painless — event. Pierced ears have existed for thousands of years. Long ago, though, the process of piercing was probably a painful proposition.

Today, though, numbing agents are used to numb the earlobes. Piercing machines pierce the earlobe and insert an earring simultaneously in a process that takes mere seconds. Most children don’t feel much more than a tiny pinch!

If you’re wondering when children should be allowed to get their ears pierced, it’s really a matter of personal preference. Most parents have their own feelings about what an appropriate age would be.

In general, many children can get their ears pierced only when they’re old enough to care for their pierced ears properly. Pierced ears require careful cleaning until they’re healed. Once they’ve healed, pierced ears don’t require much maintenance, but children should also be able to insert and remove earrings on their own.

When you first get your ears pierced, you should leave the earrings in until your ears are completely healed. This will keep the holes from growing closed and prevent infections. Keeping your ears clean will also reduce the chance of your ears getting infected.

16 Join the Discussion

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  1. Hi Wonderopolis! Today I’m going to Michigan to hang out with my cousins. But, the bad news is that there will be thunderstorms 2 of the 3 days we’re staying. :( :( :( :( :( Can you have your wonder friends pray so it won’t thunderstorm in Michigan while we’re there? ;)

    BTW, I think tomorrow’s wonder is about being in the front of lines. Also, first comment! :D

    TJ :)

    • Good morning, TJ, we’re happy you stopped by to say hi before you travel to Michigan! Have a super time with your cousins! We love family time, it’s so much fun and always makes us smile!

      We hope this weekend is great, and even if there are thunderstorms, perhaps you can play a game of cards using flashlights! We bet there are lots of ways to pass the time while there are storms.

      Thanks for sharing your comment and your prediction! We hope to see you soon, TJ! :)

    • Hey there, Betsy, what a coincidence! Many of our Wonder Friends at Wonderopolis have the same fear. Some of them got over it and got their ears pierced, while others would rather just wear clip-on earrings or none at all. Don’t worry, you’re not alone! There are lots of ways you can express your style and personality, so earrings are cool but they’re not the most important thing!

      We’re so glad you shared your comment with us, and we hope you’ll let us know what you decide when it comes to pierced ears! See you soon, Betsy! :)

      • Yeah, I’m really afraid that if I get my ears pierced it will hurt. My mom keeps saying that it’s just a little pinch but I’m not so sure about that. Once I was in Claire’s and I saw a little girl get her ears pierced and the girl had a complete MELTDOWN. She was crying and screaming and having a fit! Right now, I’m perfectly fine with my clip-ons and my magnetic earrings. Wish my ears were pierced. :(

        • Hi Alyssa, many folks refrain from piercing their ears – there are lots of ways to decorate your ears, just like you mentioned! Also, sometimes it helps to be a bit older when getting your ears pierced – it hurts less! Have a WONDERful day! :)

  2. For me, I don’t like getting pierced ears, but my mom has ear rings on her ears, in fact, she has a lot of jewelry, from ear rings to bracelets. She even makes necklaces and bracelets her hobby. :-D :-)

    • Thanks for stopping by to say hello, Carlos! We think it’s cool that you connected today’s Wonder to your mom’s pierced ears! We bet she is thrilled to know that you have been WONDERing about all the cool jewelry your mom wears. She sounds like a super talented lady, and we are so glad she’s a WONDERful part of your life! Thanks for filling us in, Carlos! Have a great weekend! :)

  3. Hi! I like this wonder a lot! I got my ears pierced when I was 5 or 6. I wear earrings a lot! I have a lot of dangly ones. My older sister and my younger sister do, too. And my parents both wear earrings, my daddy has little diamonds and my momma wears dangly ones. My little brother wears little green ones, and they look like my daddy’s except they are green. And my other little brother’s birthday is coming up, and he is going to get his ears pierced, too. Thank you for today’s wonder! :) ;)

    • This Wonder is right up your alley, Berkleigh! How neat that nearly everyone in your family has pierced ears. What a cool way to express your style! We wish your brother a happy early birthday, and we hope you have a great weekend together! :)

  4. Hi wonderopolis! I got my ears pierced once. But I got them pierced when I was a baby. So I forgot if it hurt or not.

    • Hey there Nina, thanks for telling us about your cool connection to today’s Wonder! It sounds like you’ve been sporting pierced ears for quite a while- very cool! Thanks for telling us about your own pierced ear experience! Have a SUPER day, Nina! :)

  5. Hi wonderopolis!!!! I love reading your wonders every day! This is my FIRST time sending a message to wonderopolis!!!! It is so FUN!!! I just wanted to say “Hi”. And I also wanted to tell a story. Well I saw my friends new earrings about 3 months ago and told my mom I wanted to get my ears pierce if i got a good report card. Then she said sure but then she started scaring me about the last time I got my ears pierce. It REALLY hurt. So I started to get second thoughts but I said probably it wouldn’t hurt now because I am older and she left me in WONDER so thanks for putting this wonder on so I could know what will help me keep my confidence. Oh I forgot to tell you I got a good report card!!!!! Earrings here I come!!!!!!!

    • Hi there, Makenzie, thank you so very much for WONDERing with us every day! How fun to read your super comment, too! We love your connection to our ear pierced Wonder, and we are cheering for you here at Wonderopolis! It is so great to know that you did well on your report card! Keep up the great work, Makenzie, and we look forward to WONDERing with you soon! :)

  6. I just pierced one of my ears this morning to see how bad it hurt, and I was doing this to myself. I pushed it through really fast, and pop it was done. It hardly hurt at all with no blood. I am used to pain though. Mind over matter. Leaving it in and using hospital antiseptic and now after the soreness is long gone. I thought the little bit of soreness was worse than piercing it, it bugs when it lingers for a little bit. I didn’t even read a how to on the internet or anything, probably should have but it worked out fine I guess. I am too compulsive. Looks cool. I got a diamond in there. Didn’t have to pay ether, but I don’t think someone should do it if they are scared of watching themselves stick a needle though their earlobe and then the earring. You get to the end and then have to push hard, and it pops kind of odd feeling. I will see how it heals and do it another time more then likely.

    • Oh no, Magilicutti. We worry that your ear may get infected. If you have access to a school nurse, we suggest that you have them take a look at it. Also, we suggest having a professional pierce your ears next time. Please be careful, Wonder Friend!

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Have you ever wondered…

  • Does it hurt to get your ears pierced?
  • Why do people get their ears pierced?
  • What other ways can you express yourself?

Wonder Gallery

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Try It Out

Perk up your ears! It’s time to check out one or more of the following activities with a friend or family member:

  • Do you like earrings? What kind of earrings would you wear if you could choose any earrings in the world? Long, dangly earrings? Gold? Silver? Diamonds? Ask an adult to take you to a local jewelry store to see the variety of earrings for sale. What’s the most expensive pair of earrings you can find? What are they made of? Why are they so expensive?
  • Have you ever seen someone get their ears pierced? Take a field trip to a local mall to find a jewelry shop that does ear piercings. Ask someone who works there if you can watch someone get their ears pierced. What is the process? What kind of numbing agent is used? Does it seem to hurt?
  • Do you have pierced ears? If not, do you plan to get them pierced one day? If so, did it hurt when you got them pierced? Some people choose to get their ears pierced as a form of personal expression. They might like to wear earrings, or they might like the way they look with jewelry hanging from their earlobes. There are many other ways you can express your individuality, though. What other ways might you express yourself that don’t involve pierced ears? If you enjoy jewelry, there are many types of jewelry you can wear, from necklaces to bracelets. If you make your own jewelry, that’s about the most personal form of expression you can have! Grab a friend or family member and think of other ways you might express yourselves. Be as creative as you can. You might be surprised by how many ways you can express yourself!

Still Wondering

In Science NetLinks’ Popping Ears Science Update, you’ll hear about why one’s ears might pop on a plane trip. 

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