PIERCING AFTERCARE INSTRUCTIONS

PIERCING CLEANING SOLUTIONS

Use one or both of the following solutions for healing piercings:

  • Non-Iodized sea salt mixture: Dissolve 1/4  tsp. of non-iodized (iodine-free) sea salt into one cup (8 oz.) of warm distilled or bottled water. Stronger is not better! An overly strong mixture can dry out and irritate your piercing.

  • Mild liquid antibacterial soap at the least, preferably anti-microbial or germicidal if possible (Dial Gold works, but that is bare minimum).

 

CLEANING INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Wash your hands thoroughly before touching your piercing for any reason.

  2. Saline soak for 5-10 minutes, 1-2 times daily. Invert the cup containing saline mixture over the piercing if possible, or use a piece of gauze/clean paper towel saturated with solution. Rinse well once finished.

  3. Soap 1-2 times daily, plus any additional times the piercing comes into contact with any object or is touched. Lather up a small drop of liquid soap to clean the jewelry and the base of the piercing and leave lather for 15-30 seconds. For Oral Piercings, you will also need to rinse with an antiseptic mouthwash.

  4. Rinse thoroughly to remove all soap/salt residue from the area of the piercing. DO NOT spin jewelry or pull any scabs/crust if still attached to skin.

  5. Dry by gently patting piercing site with a clean, disposable paper product. Q-Tips work great. Cloth towels can harbor bacteria, and can snag on the jewelry.

 

WHAT IS NORMAL AFTER A PIERCING

  • Initially: some bleeding, localized swelling, tenderness, bruising, general irritation.

  • During healing: some discoloration, itching, secretion of a clear or whitish-yellow fluid (similar to what you would see from a blister) that can form a crust on the jewelry. Tissue may tighten around the jewelry as it heals.

  • Once healed: the jewelry may not move freely in the piercing; DO NOT force it.

  • If you don’t include cleaning your piercing as part of your daily routine, normal but smelly bodily secretions may accumulate.

  • A piercing may seem healed before it truly is. This is because the body heals from the outside in, so while the surface may look and feel completely healed, the tissue inside is still new and delicate. Be patient, and continue caring for your piercing during the entire healing period.

  • Even fully healed piercings can shrink or close entirely in just a few minutes, whether they just finished healing or they’ve been there for years. If you want to keep the piercing, do not leave it empty!

 

WHAT TO AVOID AFTER A PIERCING

  • Avoid cleaning with Betadine, Hibiclens, alcohol, hydrogen peroxide or other harsh cleansers. Remember, stronger is not better!

  • Avoid using ointments, they can clog the pores of the skin around the piercing and cause complications during healing.

  • Avoid Bactine pierced ear care solutions and any other products that contain Benzalkonium Chloride (BZK). These can be irritating and aren’t meant for long-term wound care, plus they’re unnecessarily harsh on new tissue.

  • Avoid over-cleaning: The more you clean a piercing, the more it’s being moved around. If it’s being moved, it’s being irritated.

  • Do not change the jewelry before your piercing is ready!

  • Avoid applying any kind of cosmetic, lotion, or any other beauty/personal care product on or near your piercing.

  • Avoid hanging charms or any other object from the piercing until it is fully healed.

  • Avoid submerging the piercing is pools, hot tubs, lakes, ponds, etc. until healed. If you do go into one of these types of locations, be sure to cover the piercing with a waterproof, wound-sealant bandage (i.e. 3M Nexcare Clean Seals). You can find these at your local pharmacy.

 

HINTS AND TIPS

JEWELRY:

  • Unless there is a problem with the size, style, or material of the initial jewelry, leave it in place for the entire healing period. If you do need the jewelry to be changed, DO NOT attempt to change the piercing yourself. Return to the shop and have your piercer change it for you.

  • If your jewelry needs to be removed for a medical procedure or other reason, return to your piercer and ask about your jewelry options. There are non-metallic and non-magnetic jewelry options available.

  • If you no longer want your piercing, visit your piercer to have them remove it for you and then clean the site of the piercing as if it were still there until the piercing closes. Generally, only a small mark will remain.

  • If you suspect your piercing is infected, DO NOT remove the jewelry unless instructed by a medical professional to do so. Return to your piercer for a consultation, and they will replace it with an appropriate alternative. If the jewelry is removed, the piercing may close up and trap the infection, potentially creating an abscess.

FOR PARTICULAR AREAS:

  • Navel Piercing; A vented, hard plastic eye patch can be secured over the piercing. This can help prevent accidental trauma to the piercing from every day activities.

  • Ear/Ear Cartilage/Facial Piercing; Take a clean T-Shirt and put it over your pillow before you go to sleep. Alternate sides daily, remove the shirt and turn inside out, then put back over the pillowcase and repeat.

  • Clean any object that during normal use is in contact or close proximity to your new piercing (i.e. headphones, telephones, helmets, glasses, etc.)

  • Nipple Piercing; Wearing a tight cotton shirt or sports bra may help protect the piercing(s) and feel more comfortable, especially while sleeping.

 

If you have any questions or concerns, you can call or stop in the shop during piercing hours, or send me a message through our Facebook. If messaging through Facebook, please write “ATTN. STEPHEN” and your question/concern, and I will respond back to you as soon as is possible. Piercing hours are every Wednesday through

(413) 534-8282

1735 Northampton St Holyoke MA United States 01040

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