You’ve just been pierced and you want to make sure it heals quickly and without getting any infections. Here’s how to look after your new piercing.
CLEANING YOUR PIERCING
- Wash your hands thoroughly with anti-bacterial soap.
- Apply saline solution (recipe at the bottom) to the piercing using gauze. (Don’t double dip! Use a different part of the gauze each time you dip in the solution).
- Turn the jewellery twice only to carry the saline solution through the piercing, mopping up any excess with the gauze.
- Repeat this process morning and evening for 2-3 weeks.
- DO NOT fiddle with your piercing during the healing process, or allow anyone else to. This will inevitably lead to infection.
- DO NOT turn or move the jewellery in the bath, and do not immerse in hot soapy water for any longer than necessary. Soap and shampoo in the piercing can lead to infection and delay healing.
- DO NOT remove or replace jewellery until piercing has completely healed. Be patient.
- It will usually take three months to a year for your piercing to heal completely. Although your piercing may look healed, this might only be surface healing. Be patient with the healing process and you are less likely to encounter any problems.
- Keep healthy. A nutritious diet with some form of vitamin/ mineral supplement will help the body fight infection and heal itself.
- Avoid alcohol and non-prescription drugs since they can aggravate the piercing leading to swelling.
- Care should be taken not to contaminate new piercings. It should not be exposed to dirty environments and should not be touched unless cleaning it – don’t fiddle with it. Swimming should also be avoided for the first few weeks.
- Avoid oral contact with your piercing, as everyone’s mouth holds bacteria. Also avoid coming into contact with other people’s bodily fluids as you have an open wound and you could exchange more than just bacteria.
- Your piercing should bleed no more than a little at the time of piercing. Continued and persistent bleeding requires prompt medical attention.
- Also try to avoid wearing tight clothing.
How to make saline solution:
Saline solution is ideal to help healing since it agrees with all skin types and does not damage the pH of the skin or irritate the wound.
- Boil a pint of water and add 1/2 a level teaspoon of Sea-Salt, allow this to cool and apply to the pierced area as indicated above.
You should clean the pierced area using gauze swabs rather than cotton buds or cotton wool as they can introduce fibres into the site. Don’t double dip! Use a different part of the gauze each time you reload with solution.
All piercings weep until they heal. This is lymph and should not be confused with an infection. The lymph will form a dry crust formation that you should soak off with saline solution during the cleaning procedure.