How can I avoid dermatitis after ear piercing?

Nickel dermatitis is a common condition in ear piercings.

Image of three women with head scarves and pierced ears

Eczema and Dermatitis mean essentially the same thing and both are the names used for inflamed or irritated skin.

The NSC reports that ear piercing often can be the start of a nickel allergy, which can manifest on other parts of the body.

  • Use steel posts for newly pierced ears until healing is complete.
  • When you switch to gold, remember that the lower the karat, the higher the nickel content.  Anything less than 24-karat gold will have nickel in it.

For other suggestions in dealing with eczema and dermatitis, please see the entry on Eczema.