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Caring for a Belly Button Piercing While Pregnant

illustrated baby mobile with a pregnant belly icon, bent barbell, question marks, and piercing aftercare

A belly button piercing is a sexy and stylish highlight for your tummy, but what happens to it if you’re pregnant? Can you keep your belly button piercing as your belly starts to grow? We’re here to answer your questions about pregnancy belly piercings.

 

illustrated pregnant belly icon

Can I Keep My Belly Button Ring If I’m Pregnant?

In general, the answer is yes, you can keep your belly button ring during pregnancy as long as the piercing is fully healed (i.e. at least 2-3 months old). As long as the piercing is healthy, clean, and comfortable, there is no reason to take out your belly button jewelry. But you shouldn’t get a new belly button piercing — or any piercing — while you are pregnant, as it could unnecessarily expose you and your baby to bacteria and infection.

As the pregnancy proceeds, your stomach will expand and stretch the skin. It’s not uncommon for the piercing site to appear darker in color during this time, as the healed scar tissue of your piercing becomes more exposed. However, if the pressure on your jewelry as a result of the stretching becomes uncomfortable, or if you notice that your belly button piercing is becoming red or irritated, your jewelry is probably too small.

At that point you have a couple options. If you aren’t committed or attached to your piercing, you could take it out completely. However, if you want to keep your belly button piercing during pregnancy, there are excellent pregnancy belly rings available. In either case, if you try to remove your belly button ring and notice that it is stuck or will not move, seek help from your doctor or a professional piercer.

 

illustrated jeweled bent barbell belly ring

Belly Button Rings for Pregnancy

Pregnancy belly rings are made of soft, flexible materials like bioplast or non-toxic PTFE instead of metal, which allow for more movement and accommodation of the natural expansion of your belly button piercing during pregnancy. Most of these pregnancy belly rings allow you to cut the length of the material to the size that fits you, or you can keep them long, leaving plenty of room for your belly button piercing to expand around it.

 

illustrated icon of recovery tea tree oil bottle

Pregnancy Belly Button Piercing Care

If you choose to keep your piercing during pregnancy, there are a few basic maintenance and care steps you can take to make sure it stays as healthy as possible.

  1. Wash your hands before cleaning, removing, or changing your jewelry.
  2. Keep your belly button piercing clean and dry.
  3. Clean your jewelry weekly with warm water and a fragrance-free antibacterial soap. 
  4. Apply tea tree oil or a light skin moisturizer if you experience redness or irritation around your piercing.
     

If at any point you notice that your belly button piercing is becoming very red or swollen, it discharges a yellow pus, the skin around your piercing is starting to tear or bleed, or you develop a fever in addition to any of the above symptoms, contact your doctor immediately, as your piercing may have become infected.

By following these steps, along with any advice you receive from your doctor or piercer, your belly button piercing should be viable throughout your pregnancy and beyond.