Although it is currently thought that nipple piercing for the most part does not affect milk supply in a breastfeeding woman, there are case reports that show that trauma caused by nipple piercing can lead to blocked ducts. Researchers have also found that attachment problems can arise and cause difficulties in women wanting to breastfeed.1
In a letter published by the Journal of the American Medical Association, the author presents three cases of women with nipple piercings who experienced difficulties with breastfeeding. None of the women had the jewelry in place at the time of breastfeeding and the piercings were done at least seven years prior to the start of breastfeeding. However, this data indicates that the scarring caused by nipple piercing can have long term effects that may lead to difficulties in breastfeeding later in life. (1)
For more information, please contact the Infant Risk Center at 806-352-2519.
- Garbin CP, Deacon JP, Rowan MK, Hartmann PE, Geddes DT. Association of nipple piercing with abnormal milk production and breastfeeding. JAMA. Jun 24 2009;301(24):2550-2551.