When can I pierce my baby's ears?

Q: How old should my baby be before I pierce her ears?

A: Though you may love the look of pretty pierced ears on your little girl, most pediatricians would prefer that kids not wear earrings until they're 3 or 4 because they're a choking hazard. If you choose to pierce baby's ears, wait until she's at least 6 months, when there's less of a risk if she develops a fever if the ears get infected. Also, ask your doctor if her office does ear piercing -- many do. While the places in the mall have to meet health standards, they may not be skilled at dealing with squirmy babies. --Kate Kelly

Originally published in American Baby magazine, August 2005. Updated 2009.

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