- Packaged sterile saline is in my opinion the best choice for piercing aftercare. I adamantly suggest using a sterile saline labeled for use as a wound wash. Please do not use eye drops or other saline products on your body piercing. Your saline ingredients should list .09% sodium chloride as the only ingredient. Another common misconception is that mixing a sea salt solution is good enough but it will usually end up being too salty and strong, this can over dry the piercing and interfere with healing.
Clean your new piercing
- WASH your hands thoroughly prior to cleaning or touching your piercing for any reason. It is a fresh wound and you should treat is as such.
- CLEAN I would suggest using a non scented, liquid soap, gently lather around the piercing and rinse as needed.
- SALINE rinse as needed during healing. Sometimes it might be easier to apply using clean gauze soaked with the saline. A short rinse afterward will remove any residue.
- RINSE thoroughly to remove all traces of the soap from the piercing. It is not necessary to rotate the jewelry through the piercing.
- DRY by gently patting with clean, disposable paper products.
Is this okay? What should I expect?
- At first it might bleed, swell, bruise, and or be tender.
- A piercing may seem healed before it actually is because tissue heals from the outside in, so it could it feel fine but the interior is still healing.
- Once healed: the jewelry may or may not not move freely in the piercing; please do not force it. If you don’t clean your piercing as part of your daily hygiene routine it might smell from the secretion.
- During healing: some discoloration might happen, it will probably itch, secretion can form some crusty stuff on and around the jewelry and the tissue may tighten around the piercing as it heals.
- Even healed piercings can shrink or close in minutes after having been there for years! It is normal for your body to try and heal itself so if you like your piercing, keep jewelry in!
What Should I not do?
- Stay away from alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, harsh or scented soaps, or iodine. Also avoid ointments as they prevent air circulation.
- Stay away from Bactine®, pierced ear care solutions, and other products containing Benzalkonium Chloride (BZK). These can be irritating and are not intended for long-term wound care.
- Avoid over-cleaning. This can delay your healing and irritate your piercing.
- Avoid irritating it with friction from clothing, playing with the jewelry, and hard scrubbing. These are the things that can cause scar tissue, migration, long healing time, and other complications.
- Try to avoid all oral contact, being rough, and contact with bodily fluids that are not your own around it during healing.
- Stay away from lakes, pools, hot tubs, etc. Or, protect your piercing using a waterproof wound sealant bandage.
- Avoid all beauty and personal care products on or around the piercing
- As much as you want to do not change the jewelry until the recommended time and when you do use quality jewlery