Left Earring Meaning: Is It Advisable to Sleep with Earrings On?


Wearing earrings while sleeping has been a subject of debate when it comes to its impact on your health and safety. This article explores the meaning behind wearing earrings on the left side and discusses the potential side effects and safety concerns associated with sleeping with earrings on. Additionally, we will delve into the implications for new piercings and when it is necessary to consult a doctor. Let’s uncover the truth about wearing earrings during sleep.

Is It Safe?

When it comes to sleeping with earrings, the general rule is to avoid doing so, with one notable exception: new piercings. For newly pierced ears, it is crucial to keep the small studs in place for a minimum of 6 weeks or as advised by your piercer. This helps ensure that the piercing does not close up prematurely.

However, if your piercings are older, it is recommended to avoid wearing earrings made with nickel overnight, as well as large hoops, dangle or drop-style earrings. These types of earrings can potentially increase the risk of experiencing unpleasant side effects.

Potential Side Effects

Sleeping with earrings on can lead to several common yet serious side effects. Let’s take a closer look at them:

1. Torn Skin

During sleep, earrings can become entangled in your bedding or hair, increasing the risk of tearing your earlobe. This danger is further amplified with larger earrings or those with openings such as hoops and dangles.

2. Headaches

If you frequently wake up with headaches, wearing earrings overnight might be the culprit. This risk is higher if you sleep on your side, as the earring can press against the side of your head, causing discomfort. To alleviate this issue, try sleeping without earrings and, in the case of new piercings, consider sleeping on your back.

3. Infections

Failing to clean your piercings regularly while wearing the same earrings for an extended period can result in trapped bacteria, leading to infections. Watch out for signs such as redness, swelling, pain, or pus, as these may indicate an infection.

4. Allergic Reactions

Sleeping in certain earrings can heighten the risk of allergic reactions, especially to nickel. Nickel is commonly found in costume jewelry and is known to cause allergies in approximately 30 percent of earring wearers. Prolonged wear of nickel-based earrings can cause red, itchy rashes. Consequently, sleeping with such earrings may increase the likelihood of developing eczema around the ears.

To avoid nickel allergies, it is advisable to wear earrings made from surgical steel, sterling silver, or at least 18-karat gold. Hypoallergenic materials like these are typically used for new piercings, eliminating concerns about overnight nickel reactions during the initial piercing process.

Sleeping Safely with Earrings

The only circumstance where it is safe to intentionally sleep with earrings on is when you have newly pierced ears. Nonetheless, even with studs, there is still a slight risk of complications. Hair, clothing, or bedding materials can become entangled with the earrings, potentially causing issues.

To minimize this risk, request your piercer to use flat studs instead of those with jagged edges or jewels. Moreover, for side sleepers, adjusting to new piercings can be challenging. Sleeping on your back, rather than on your side, can help reduce discomfort during the healing process.

Can New Piercings Be Removed?

New piercings are made with hypoallergenic, professional-grade materials. Consequently, it is safe to leave them in place for several weeks while the piercing heals. Removing the earrings, even at night, could result in the holes closing up. In such cases, you would need to wait additional weeks for the skin to heal before attempting to repierce the area.

Moreover, avoid twisting or playing with the jewelry to minimize the risk of irritation and infection. Only handle the jewelry when cleaning the area, and be sure to wash your hands thoroughly beforehand.

It is advisable to consult your piercer before removing the original stud earrings, as they will likely recommend waiting at least 6 weeks to ensure proper healing of the holes. Following your piercer’s aftercare instructions is crucial during this period.

This typically involves cleaning the skin around the studs two to three times per day using a saline solution or gentle soap and water.

When to Seek Medical Attention

When you adhere to the aftercare instructions provided by your piercer, sleeping with new ear piercings should not cause any issues. However, if you experience any of the following symptoms after sleeping with earrings, it is recommended to consult a doctor:

  • Persistent redness accompanied by a rash that does not improve
  • Swelling that worsens and continues to grow
  • Discharge coming from the piercing
  • Tears in or around the piercing itself
  • Persistent headaches or ear irritation


Ear piercings are a popular form of self-expression, but they are not without risks or side effects. Taking proper care of your piercings, whether they are new or old, is essential. Understanding when to remove your earrings is part of this care. While new piercings require you to keep the studs in, it is generally advised to avoid sleeping with earrings in older piercings. By following these guidelines, you can ensure the health and well-being of your ears while expressing your personal style.