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Why Does Only One of My Ears React to Earrings

Why Does Only One of My Ears React to Earrings?

Why does only one of my ears react to earrings? Back when I used to pierce ears, one of the most common questions we would get is, “Why does one ear bother me, but not the other?” That’s what we’re going to discuss in today’s article.

Look At The Ear

In these situations, the first thing we would do is look at the ear. Is the skin red? Is the skin flaky? Are there any bumps? Or maybe the earring on too tight?

Oftentimes, people would assume right away that it is the metal causing this issue. Is it the gold? Is the gold fake? Or is it the stainless steel? Is it the titanium? What is causing this? But nine times out of ten, if it was the metal, it would be bothering both ears. So if it’s bothering the right ear, it’s also going to bother the left ear, and vice versa.

If one ear is red and not the other, more than likely, it is because one side is being favored over the other side, and therefore, it is causing irritation.

Sleeping On One Side

Sleeping On One Side with new piercing
Sleeping On One Side with the new piercing

For example, sleeping on one side versus the other.

Now, back in May when I got my most recent piercing, after my ears were already healed, my right ear was still bothering me. It was still much more irritated than my left ear, and that’s because I slept on my right side. I would feel it as soon as I woke up, and it would be irritated throughout the day.

How To Sleep After Getting Ears Pierced?

To avoid favoring one side when sleeping, people either sleep upright with an airplane pillow or position their ears in the pillow’s hole. Now, this is definitely for adults. This wouldn’t work for kids because obviously, you can’t put anything in a crib with a baby or a child, and kids typically don’t sleep with pillows, so that wouldn’t work.

If it’s a kid, I would switch the earring to something more comfortable, and of course, this would be after the healing period because you don’t want the hole to close up. There’s just too much to go over when it comes to kids’ earrings.

Causes of Different Types of Piercing Bumps

Sleep with Wet Hair

Now, let’s talk about bumps real quick. Are you sleeping with wet hair? Because sometimes, sleeping with wet hair can cause blister-like bumps on the back of the ear. Just avoid sleeping with wet hair because that can cause blister-like bumps on the back of the ear.


Other types of bumps are usually caused by some type of irritation, like trauma or the type of earring. For example, sometimes different types of studs might be digging into the ear, or sharp posts might be poking you. That’s what I mean by the type of jewelry or maybe how it was pierced. Those are a few things that can cause irritation. Learn more about how to get rid of piercing bumps here.

The Earring Is Too Tight

Also, definitely check to see if the earring is on too tight because this can happen if you’re pierced at a place like Claire’s or Pagoda where they use normal butterfly backings.

Sometimes the butterfly backing can slide forward or maybe it was pushed forward. Unfortunately, some people think that having the earring on tighter is better because they’re afraid to lose it, but that could actually cause your ear to get very irritated because your ear can’t breathe, and it’s just irritating your ear way too much. So, definitely avoid putting your earrings on too tight.

After about four to six weeks, you can switch the earring to something different. When it comes to new piercings, it’s all trial and error. So if the first earring you were pierced with did not work, definitely try something different.

A Bump That’s Not Red

Another type of bump would be a bump that’s not red. It’s usually the same color as your skin tone, maybe a little bit darker, and that is more than likely going to be a keloid. A keloid is scar tissue. Unfortunately, this is something you can not remove. It would be best to see a dermatologist if you have any suspicions of a keloid.


I say all that to emphasize that one ear is bothering you more than the other because of some type of irritation or you’re favoring one ear over the other. The key is to really figure out what is irritating your ear. I hope you found this article helpful, if you still have questions about why only one of my ears react to earrings, feel free to contact us.

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