The idea of a new piercing is exciting…you know, up to the point where you have to start dabbing surgical spirit on the healing wound.
It’s not that pleasant.
A piercing can completely change your look from plain Jane to freakishly sexy Betty. However, chances of a serious infection is just a misstep away. Piercings can take a few days or weeks to heal depending on your day to day care. We scored the internet for what has worked for various of people. Here’s what we found out.
1. Handle the Piercings with Care
Don't remove the starter earrings until your piercings have healed. These earrings are made from hypo-allergenic materials and specific type of post designed to be safe to keep in your ears indefinitely. If you remove them prematurely, your piercings may close or heal improperly. If your piercings are on your earlobes, the starter earrings can usually be removed after six weeks. If your piercings are in your cartilage, the starter earrings can usually be removed after eight to twelve weeks.
Unnecessary handling of your piercings can lead to infection. (Courtesy)
2. Don't touch your ears often.
Unnecessary handling of your piercings can lead to infection. Don't touch them unless you're cleaning them. If you do need to touch them, wash your hands with antibacterial soap first.
- Don't let other substances touch your ears. Avoid getting shampoo, conditioner, and other hair products on your ears, since the ingredients in these products could lead to an infection. You can place a plastic sandwich bag over either ear to help protect your piercings while you're in the shower.
- If you want to swim you will just need to clean them with the solution that you get after getting your ears pierced before and after you swim. Just make sure you rinse your ears with clean water before cleansing them, after you swim.
- Try to sleep on your back. Sleeping with your ear against the pillow can irritate your piercings, in addition to being painful. If you find it difficult to sleep on your back, make sure your pillowcase is clean each night. Bacteria from your pillowcase can get transmitted to your piercing, which could cause an infection.
3. Clean the Piercings
Wash your hands with antibacterial soap. This is an important step, since you can easily transfer bacteria to your ears with your fingers. Dip a cotton ball or swab in cleaning solution. Use salt-based cleanser meant specifically for treating piercings. Don't use rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or antibacterial ointment. These contain ingredients that inhibit your skin cells from regenerating and healing.
- Swab the piercing with the saturated cotton ball or swab. Clean both the front and the back of the piercing, making sure the entire area gets covered with the cleaning solution. Make sure the solution goes inside the piercing.
- Clean them three times a day. Don't skip a cleaning, especially in the first few weeks after you get your ears pierced.
Clean them three times a day (Courtesy)
4. Rotate the earring.
Gently rotate the earring two or three times to make sure the antiseptic gets inside the piercing. Also move the piercing back a forth. This also prevents the piercing from healing too tightly around the hole.
5. Watch for signs of infection
Check for redness and swelling. These symptoms are normal for the first couple of days after getting a piercing, but if they don't subside soon after that, you may have an infection or allergy.
- If the earring feels tight, you may just need to pull the earring clutch away from your lobe a bit. If the pain doesn't go away after pulling it back, see a doctor.
- Problems caused by allergic reactions can usually be easily resolved by removing the piercing. However, this will cause the hole to heal back up.
- If you want to save the piercing, see a doctor, who will be able to treat your ear and advise you on whether it's necessary to take out the piercing.
- See a doctor if you experience serious symptoms. Pus discharge, excessive itching, redness, and extreme pain are signs of an infection. Either remove the earring immediately yourself, or if it is too painful, have a doctor remove it. Bathe the infected ear with antibiotic ointment and bandage it until it has healed.
- Seek immediate care if your earlobe tears. If your earring snags on something and causes your earlobe to tear, you may need stitches. Go to an immediate care center or the emergency room to have your ear treated right away.
Take note of your ear's reactions to different metals. (Courtesy)
5. Remove your starter earrings
Once your ears have healed, which will take six to nine weeks, you can swap out your starter earrings. Wear post-style earrings for the first six months to ensure that your piercing hole won't stretch out from heavy earrings. After six months, you can wear hoops and dangling earrings.
- When you change earrings, take note of your ear's reactions to different metals. Some people are sensitive to metals other than gold, sterling silver.
- Platinum is another good hypoallergenic choice for those with skin sensitivities or allergies.