Pierced and pregnant

Last week over a latte, my friend confided that her teenage daughter was keen to get her belly button pierced.

She was ok with the idea of belly adornment, but concerned about how the piercing might mutate as she aged, and in particular, what would happen to it when she got pregnant.

Would it stretch and hurt?

And what would happen afterward?

A post-baby belly is confronting enough without a gaping hole, or a piece of extra skin flapping around…

 

In the name of research, I’ve asked around about navel piercings and what happens to them during pregnancy and beyond.

 

I discovered 5 things:

1. Everyone’s experience is different.

My cousin Cheree, pregnant with her fourth child said:

Mine has stayed the same through all 4 pregnancies…just the belly has changed!  hehehe…no infections or any extra care needed.

Yet, my friend Alinta had a completely different experience:

I took it out while pregnant with my first because I just didn’t think it looked that nice anymore, and I was over it anyway. 5 years and two more pregnancies on, the hole is still there, looks yuck, and is the only stretch mark I have over my entire body.

And Tina from TinaGray{dot}me shared via Twitter:

I have mine done, and didn’t need to take it out while pregnant. Although some of my friends had to take theirs out or use an extender.

An extender??? Sounds like something to be avoided if possible…kind of like seafood extender.

 

2. You can get special bling for your belly.

Pierced belly button in pregnancy

BioFlex Jewelled Belly Button Banana

Along with lobbying your partner for that push present, this is some additional adornment that you can justify as a pregnancy essential.

 

Flexible body jewellery, or an ‘extender’ can make your piercing more comfortable while your belly expands, and can minimise scarring around the site.

 

Certainly a much better option than the alarming DIY approach my friend Pene shared with me:

I knew a chick who threaded fishing line through her’s when she was preggers so that it wouldn’t close up (she was told by her Doc to take it out!!)

Fishing lines and a belly button don't mix...

3. It affects your energy flow.

My friend Meegs suggested that a belly button piercing could affect your Qi (pronounced ‘chi’), or energy flow.

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), a navel piercing can disturb your meridian flow, which in turn can impact your fertility.

It is also recommended in TCM that a belly piercing be removed while pregnant and lactating. Read about Traditional Chinese Medicine and piercings here.

 

4. It shouldn’t close up.

If you do choose to remove the piercing, it is unlikely to close up if you had your belly button pierced more than 3 years ago. But check with a professional piercer or a doctor if you are unsure.

 

5. It is not safe to get your belly button pierced while pregnant.

Piercings can increase your chance of infection, which is to be especially avoided when you are pregnant. In addition, as the immune system is working harder in pregnancy, you are more susceptible to infection.

If you want to get pierced, do it well before you are thinking of having children, or wait till later.

 

Had an experience with piercings while pregnant?

What do you think of pierced belly buttons?

Would you let your child get one?

 

 


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Comments

  • http://beafunmum.com/ Kelly B

    Such an interesting article Andrea! And I’ll know where to send friends of mine who are wondering! :)

    • http://www.foxinflats.com.au FoxInFlats

      Thanks Kelly!

  • http://www.wheresmyglow.com Glowless

    I only have a tongue piercing because belly piercings were all the rage and I wanted to be different. Now tongue piercings are all the rage and I’m just one of the crowd.

    I suppose I’d have to let my child get pierced if he wanted to, seeing as I went behind my mum’s back and got mine done.

    • http://www.foxinflats.com.au FoxInFlats

      Ha ha Glowless, you rebel, you!

  • Leah

    oh man belly button piercings totally gross me out. How about how icky it feels when you poke your finger into it? A piercing must feel like this all the time.

    • http://twitter.com/FoxInFlats Andrea

      I wonder? 

  • Jo

    Was thinking of getting one, but that info on the Chinese Medicine was food for thought. Who knew?

    • http://twitter.com/FoxInFlats Andrea

      Yes, I was surprised to find that too. 

  • http://www.milkncookies.info Casey

    I have had mine pierced. I took it out with my first because it was rubbing uncomfortably on everything as it was poking out as I grew. I put it back in afterwards and the hole had stretched a little but nothing really noticeable. I wore it through the entire pregnancy with my second and it is still in. It is possibly the only preety part of my belly that now resembles a road map!

    • http://twitter.com/FoxInFlats Andrea

      Always good to take the focus off bits we don’t love huh?!

  • http://www.mummy-time.com Brenda

    That sounds painful!

  • http://www.mummy-time.com Brenda

    That sounds painful!

  • http://www.mariatedeschi.com/mumsword Mrs M

    I had one. Fell pregnant with my first 3 children very easily. All in the first month of trying.

    Took it out right at the end of the my 3rd pregnancy because it started to hurt. I never put it back in.

    The hole didn’t seem to be as deep into my belly button as when I first got it done.

    Watching my tattoo expand and contract with my pregnancies was interesting to watch.

    Love & stuff
    Mrs M

    • http://twitter.com/FoxInFlats Andrea

      Watching your tattoo expand and contract – cool! 

  • Rachel Hair

    I had my naval pierced originally over 15yrs ago and had to have it removed for several operations.  I had it re-pierced in the early months of my first pregnancy and it has been in ever since thru a total of 3 pregnancies and 14yrs and it’s still there now. 

    No problems during any of the pregnancies and no after problems especially considering that like Casey, my stomach is now a road map of stretchmarks.

    My littlest (3yold) loves playing with it when we are cuddling in bed so it still has it benefits.  Not sure when I’ll take it out as it’s just part of the scenery now.

  • Rachel Hair

    I had my naval pierced originally over 15yrs ago and had to have it removed for several operations.  I had it re-pierced in the early months of my first pregnancy and it has been in ever since thru a total of 3 pregnancies and 14yrs and it’s still there now. 

    No problems during any of the pregnancies and no after problems especially considering that like Casey, my stomach is now a road map of stretchmarks.

    My littlest (3yold) loves playing with it when we are cuddling in bed so it still has it benefits.  Not sure when I’ll take it out as it’s just part of the scenery now.

  • Rachel Hair

    I had my naval pierced originally over 15yrs ago and had to have it removed for several operations.  I had it re-pierced in the early months of my first pregnancy and it has been in ever since thru a total of 3 pregnancies and 14yrs and it’s still there now. 

    No problems during any of the pregnancies and no after problems especially considering that like Casey, my stomach is now a road map of stretchmarks.

    My littlest (3yold) loves playing with it when we are cuddling in bed so it still has it benefits.  Not sure when I’ll take it out as it’s just part of the scenery now.

    • http://twitter.com/FoxInFlats Andrea

      Hey Rachel – always handy to have an in-built play thing for the kiddies! ;) 
      x

  • Donna

    Maybe you can do a follow up post on genital piercings during pregnancy?

  • Merranda

    I only had my bellybutton pierced maybe a year when I was pregnant. I had to take it out near the end because the skin over the jewelry was being stretched and bruised.  It didn’t close up but became slightly smaller so I had to stretch it back a bit, which didn’t hurt as much as it probably sounds to some. I even had a neat little X shaped stretch mark over it, but that went away.  I still have it and it doesn’t look any different than before the baby.

    • Anonymous

      Cutest stretch mark ever!

  • http://www.themummyautobiography.com Miss Pink

    I had a friend who didn’t take her belly piercing out and it ripped out when she was 27weeks. She now has a nice long scar from it. Her story alone scares me. You can just never tell, my luck i’d be the one where it rips out and leaves the massive scar.

  • Mel Duker

    I had a belly ring for over 10 years before I was preggas. Had it taken out during the 1st trimester, similar to the story above, I think I was a bit over it and didn’t want to risk anything happening. The hardest part was finding someone who could take it out as I had always been to squirmy to do it myself. Apart from that there is a little mark there as a reminder of “those days”.

    • FoxInFlats

      Oh see the reminder of “those days” is cool I think. Like when I had my ears pierced twice when I was 14. Wow was THAT a big deal (at the time, for my Dad!) I can still feel the knobby bit where it’s closed over, and it reminds me of how long I begged my dad to let me do it – ha ha ha!

      • Mel Duker

        Ah yes the debate for the 2nd ear piercings…. only to have not put in any earrings for hmmm about 2yrs (age of toddler). Not very Foxxy of me but I make up for it with getting nails done regularly :o)

  • Bex

    I got my naval pierced in my early 20s and 10 years later I still love it. I’m planning on getting an extender when I pop to try and keep the piercing – hopefully it stays looking good during and after pregnancy!

    • FoxInFlats

      Fingers crossed! I think they look cool.

  • Pingback: What real mummy tummies look like :: Fox In Flats

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