These aftercare guidelines are based upon the experience of our piercers and current industry opinion that have been derived from professional experience, common sense, research and clinical practice. We are not medical professionals and our suggestions, whether written, verbal, or implied, should not be construed as medical advice or considered as a substitute. If you suspect an infection or other serious problem, seek medical attention. Please keep in mind that many doctors have not received specific training regarding piercing and the removal of jewelry may lead to further complications.
While Your Piercing is Healing
- Keep your care simple. These care guidelines have been established based on what has been found tried and true, so please understand that we have your best interest in mind.
- Do not touch your piercing with dirty hands. The only time that you should touch your piercing is with freshly washed hands during cleaning or when tightening the balls. With any threaded jewelry (straight, curved or circular barbells), you should tighten both balls daily. “righty-tighty, lefty-loosey”
- Do not move the jewelry. There is no need to move or rotate your jewelry, this can cause irritation and may damage healing tissue. The jewelry we pierce with is the finest on the market, it is very bio-compatable and will not stick to your body. Our steel is ASTM F-138 implant certified, Titanium is ASTM F-136 implant certified. Our gold is solid 14k or solid 18k. Our white gold is nickel free. We don’t pierce with anything plated.
- Do not wear constrictive clothing. Tight clothing can move the jewelry away from where it usually rests, causing irritation and discomfort. Avoid sleeping on your stomach with navel or nipple piercings.
- Keep other people’s body fluids off your new piercing. This is important because bacteria from your body differs from other peoples, which can lead to infection.
- Keep your piercing out of large bodies of water; including lakes, rivers, oceans, swimming pools, hot tubs, even your own bathtub for the first three months. “Tegaderm” and “Clean Seals” are waterproof bandages that will protect your fresh navel or nipple piercing from exposure to unclean water.
- Keep any products other than your cleaning products away from your piercing. This includes hand or body soaps, shampoo, makeup, lotions, face scrubs, etc. These can cause irritation, discomfort, complications and delay healing.
- Take care of yourself. Your body will provide optimal healing for your piercing when your are healthy. The best thing you can do for your piercing is eat well and get plenty of sleep. A good multivitamin, containing zinc and vitamin C can help your immune system meet its full potential.
DO NOT USE
- Hydrogen Peroxide, Rubbing Alcohol or Which Hazel can be exceptionally drying and can kill new cell growth, prolonging the healing process.
- Ointments such as Bacitracin, Neosporin, Triple Antibotic Ointment or any other petroleum based products. Petroleum does not allow oxygen to get to the piercing or cellular slough to exit the piercing and allows a warm moist environment for bacteria to grow. Furthermore, the label specifies "Not for use on puncture wounds".
- Surgical Scrubs such as Iodine, Betadine or Hibiclens, these products are too strong and can lead to irritation and will do more harm than good.
- Benzethonium or Benzalkonium Chloride solutions including Bactine or Ear Care solutions. These agents have limited effectiveness against many types of pathogens and have a high chance of becoming contaminated.
- Anti-Bacterial soaps such as liquid Dial, Lever 2000 and Softsoap as they contain chemicals that can promote scaring and are not intended for use on damaged tissue.
What You Need to Do:
Salt Water Soaks
Performing a salt water soak twice daily can speed up the healing process, reduce the chances of infections and help sooth an irritated or tender piercing. Use of a warm salt soak can increase circulation at the piercing site and draw out cellular slough and impurities from the piercing.
Combine 8oz. of warm distilled or bottled water with 1/4 teaspoon of natural non-iodized sea salt in a disposable plastic cup. Use a new cup each time. Place the cup firmly over the piercing site and apply pressure to maintain a seal, allowing the piercing to soak for 10 minutes. If the piercing is in an area where this is not possible, such as a facial or ear piercing, use a clean cotton ball or gauze pads dipped in the warm salt water solution and apply to the piercing, re-dipping every few minutes to keep the compress warm. Rinse the piercing with water after your sea salt soak. Do not use table salt or Epson salt, as these contain chemicals that are not conducive to healing and may be too strong or irritating. There are also pre-mixed solutions such as H2Ocean available that are ideal for piercing care when you are away from home.
The best time to do one of your daily salt water soaks is right before your daily cleaning with your anti-microbial soap, as this will loosen up any crusted matter on the piercing site and allow for easier cleaning.
Your piercing should be cleaned once daily with an anti-microbial soap which has been approved for usage on broken skin, such as Provon or PurSan. This should be the last thing you do before you get out of the shower, after washing your hair and body.
Pour a dime sized amount in the palm of your hands and lather the piercing, jewelry, and surrounding area, taking care to remove any crusted matter that may by on the jewelry. You do not need to rotate the soap into the piercing, but once you have rinsed the soap off the piercing, you may rotate the jewelry under running water to remove any traces of soap. Do not use your soap more than once a day, as over cleaning your piercing can lead to irritation. Use a disposable paper towel or clean gauze to dry your piercing when you are done. Avoid bath towels, as even a clean towel can harbor bacteria or have residue from cleaning products that can irritate your piercing.
Oral Piercing Care
Use an alcohol free mouthwash such as Tech-2000 or Biotene no more than twice a day. Tech-2000 must be diluted three capfuls to 8 oz. of water. Use a new cup each time. You don’t want to give bacteria a chance to get in your new piercing. Do not use alcohol based mouthwashes such as Listerine, as alcohol is not conducive to the healing process. Over using mouthwash or using a mouthwash with alcohol could kill ALL the bacteria that eat yeast and molds in your mouth, causing a perfect environment for the natural yeasts in your mouth to flourish.
Mix 8 oz. of bottled or distilled water with ¼ teaspoon natural non-iodized sea salt. Mix this in an 8 oz. cup and use a new cup each time. You can rinse up to 4 times a day. Do not over clean your oral piercing. After meals is a good time to do a salt soak.
Your piercing is expected to be noticeably swollen for the first few days, with residual swelling that will decrease gradually in the first month. The original piece of jewelry in you oral piercing may seem long or too large. This extra length is to accommodate swelling. When the swelling has subsided, it is important that you come back and purchase something shorter. This shorter piece of jewelry will be more comfortable and fit better, which will be safer for your teeth and gums. During the initial swelling period, 3-5 days, the following suggestions may decrease your swelling and ease your discomfort.
Keep your mouth cold with crushed ice, ice cream, slushies, shakes, etc. If you have a tongue piercing, do not use straws for the first week.
Smoking or other tobacco use, alcohol, caffeine or recreational drugs can cause excessive swelling, bleeding, soreness and other complications that may delay the healing process. They should be avoided or their use should be reduced dramatically.
You can eat whatever is comfortable with the exception of hot or spicy foods that can cause discomfort or irritation. Be careful when eating. Your initial jewelry has extra length that you are more likely to bite.
Do not play with your jewelry. During your initial healing period, your piercing can tear easily, which not only causes discomfort, but can also make your piercing look crooked. Playing with your jewelry can also increase your chances of having tooth or gum damage.
Continue to practice good oral hygiene by brushing your teeth twice a day even thought your piercing may be tender. Oral contact must be avoided even if you are in a monogamous relationship, as other people’s body fluids can lead to an infection.
The following healing times are based upon the experience of our piercers and current industry opinion. It is important to remember that these times are generalized and that we all heal at different rates. Other factors that can contribute to the healing process include how the piercing is cared for, stress, illness, diet, climate, etc.
- Ampallang 6-8 months
- Apadravya 6-8 months
- Anchor 2-3 months
- Bridge 3-5 months
- Cartilage 6-8 months
- Dydoe 3-5 months
- Earlobes 6-8 weeks
- Eyebrows 2-3 months
- Frenum 2-3 months
- Labia (inner) 2-3 months
- Labia (outer) 3-5 months
- Labret/Lip 2-3 months
- Navel 6-8 months
- Nipple 3-5 months
- Nostril 2-3 months
- Prince Albert 2-3 months
- Scrotum 2-3 months
- Tongue 2-3 months