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Although some parents choose to put off piercing their little girls’ ears until they’re old enough to care for them on their own, others prefer to get it over with early so they can have fun accessorizing tiny outfits for years to come. Every parent will have an opinion on when exactly a child should get her ears pierced, but all parents will have the same concerns about the safety and reliability of the actual procedure. To prepare your child for the experience, make sure to answer the following questions when getting your daughter’s ears pierced.

How established and reputable is the piercing place?
Before committing to a particular ear-piercing studio, you want to make sure you can trust them with handling your child’s procedure in a safe and responsible manner. One of the ways you can verify a studio’s credibility is by researching how long they’ve been open and reading through some online reviews of the facility. Verify that the location you’re considering is properly licensed to perform the procedure.

How clean and organized is the facility?
To avoid running into any surprises when you take your daughter to get her ears pierced, you might want to inspect the location on your own beforehand to make sure it meets your standards. Check specifically for the cleanliness of the area and to see whether everything is organized. If sterilizing supplies are left sitting out, this is a red flag that the facility isn’t trustworthy. You should also ask specifically if the piercing facility utilizes a piercing gun or a needle. Although piercing guns can be a perfectly safe tool if properly maintained, they tend to run a higher risk of housing germs and pathogens.

Is your child allergic to any metals?
When it comes to health concerns, every child is different. However, younger children tend to be more pain-sensitive compared to adults. For this reason, it’s a good idea to have your child tested to be sure she isn’t allergic to any kind of metal. Furthermore, you’ll want to verify that the pain will be something your child can to handle. Ear piercing is pretty comparable to the prick of a needle from a shot; if your child doesn’t handle shots well, you might want to wait until she’s a little older to get the piercing done. If you’d rather get it over with now, research piercing studios that offer numbing solutions to make the procedure easier on pain-intolerant tots.

Even though the right age for piercing your child’s ears will be a personal decision, determining the safety of the procedure should be a rule across the board. Deciding which piercing studio is qualified to pierce your little girl’s ears will take some research and investigation, so make sure to avoid any spur-of-the-moment decisions. Luckily, piercing your child’s ears won’t be as bad as you think, so wipe away the tears with a pair of adorable earrings to complete your little cutie’s new look.

Earnest Parenting: help for parents who are thinking about daughters and ear piercing.