I read that it's better to pierce with a needle. Is this true?
For babies, I will always use a medical piercing gun for safety reasons. Sometimes babies can by very active during a piercing, making it very difficult for a parent to hold the baby still enough so that a needle piercing could be safely done. That said, in my years of experience doing thousands of piercings with both needle and gun methods, I have not seen any difference in the healing process, placement or function of the piercing.
Whether using the gun or needle, my accuracy in placement and angle is the same.
For older kids the main drawback is the more limited choice in jewelry. The upside of course is the speed of the piercing. For kids sometimes the piercing gun will just be an all around better experience.
For cartilage piercings I will always use a needle and jewelry specifically made for this part of the ear.
For piercing after surgical repair I will always use a needle because I am piercing adjacent to scar tissue. The needle is slightly thinner than the piercing gun posts allowing me to repierce in an area of the lobe where space is often limited.
The main difference between the 2 methods (gun vs needle) is the jewelry. When I am using a needle I am not limited to the pre-packaged jewelry that Blomdahl medical piercing system manufactures. When a client decides on a needle piercing (ages 5 & up) they have a much larger selection of jewelry to choose from including yellow gold, white gold, titanium, diamonds, cubic zirconia, etc. An additional benefit is that they do not have to change out of the earrings. When using the piercing gun, earrings are disposable and must be changed at the 6-8 week mark.
The bottom line is that the ultimate quality of the piercing is in the hands of the piercer. A perfect piercing can be achieved with either method