It’s 1:42 am as I type this. I had a pretty long day so I planned to sleep early but here I am…
Let’s talk about piercings. What’s your take on them? Are you crazy about them or do you fall among the category of people that are fine with the one they got at birth? If not, how many piercings have you got and where?
I really love piercings but not to the extent of staying up this late writing on the topic (it’s not that deep). The only reason I’m up right now and typing this is because I just discovered I have a piercing infection. Specifically a tragus (small flap of cartilage that is located right next to the outside of your ear canal) piercing infection. Sad innit?
I only had a pair of piercing on my ears until I was 15. My sister and I got another pair on her 13th birthday. I can’t remember whose idea it was but fast forward to last year, I planned to get more on my birthday as well but wasn’t able to until 2weeks ago. I got 3 piercings (a pair on my ears and one on my left tragus because my left dimple is the deeper one. I know I sound very vain *shrugs). And this time I got it without my sister.
The instructions I got from the professional piercer were:
1. Clean them with disinfectant twice daily.
2. Do not let soap or shampoo come in contact with the piercings.
3. Ensure nothing including your hair touches your piercings.
4. Do not put your phone close to your piercings/ear.
4. Remove and clean the earrings after 2weeks.
5. Rotate the earrings everyday with clean hands.
Except for the times I’d forget and hold my phone directly to my ear instead of using earphones, I adhered to these instructions. Considering how sensitive I am, I’d say my tragus piercing got infected 2days ago. I noticed it was swollen but it didn’t start feeling warm and heavy till this morning. And I didn’t confirm it was an infection until about 2 hours ago when I noticed pus oozing out of it. I immediately cleaned it with Methylated spirit and spent 30 minutes trying to take out the earring. When I finally did, the struggle to take out the earring worsened the swelling.
I suspect the infection might have been triggered by a jewelry rejection. My skin reacts to jewelries that aren’t pure gold or silver and I’ve always known that but my own earring couldn’t fit into the earring gun when I was piercing so I had to use the ones they had hoping since it is an original GL ( I have no idea what GL stands for, does anyone?), I could get away with not reacting at least until the piercings heal. Alas, I was wrong! *sigh*
I had to research on tragus piercing right after disinfecting mine and replacing the GL earring. I came across a few things that were omitted by the piercer and I thought to share them with you guys. I hope you find this helpful.
Things You Need To Know About Piercing Care
1. Do not clean with alcohol, dettol, iodine, hydrogen peroxide or contact solution as they will burn and ruin your piercing.
2. The best disinfectants to use for piercings are Sterile Saline Solution or non-iodized sea salt water.
3. Do not sleep on the ear/part where you had your piercing done until it’s completely healed.
4. Avoid swimming until piercing is healed.
5. Avoid playing with piercing or touching with dirty hands.
6. Turn the earring ONLY when it’s wet (during cleaning).
7. Be careful not to tug or pull the jewelry especially when putting on round/narrow-neck tops/t-shirts.
7. Ear lobe piercings takes 2-3months to heal while cartilage piercings take about 3months – 1year depending on individuals.
8. Cartilage piercings require more TLC.
Some causes of piercing infections
1. Piercing with an inexperienced piercer
2. Not properly cleaning the piercing
3. Jewelry rejection
4. Not adhering to the instructions above.
Some of the signs that indicate you might have an infection include pain, redness, warmth, swelling and discharge. When you observe any or all of these signs, the first thing to do is consult with your piercer (which I did right before cleaning mine).
I also looked up and started some home remedies although my focus was on tragus piercing but I believe it applies to other types of piercing.
Home remedies for Treating a Tragus Infection
1. Clean with a saline solution 2-3times daily
2. Use hot compress.
I came across various options for hot compress which include tea tree oil, chamomile tea bag, sea salt. I went with the sea salt compress which was the easiest and most available option for me.
Procedure for Sea Salt Water Compress
1. Boil water and allow it to cool down a bit (till it’s warm).
2. Add 1/4 tablespoon of salt in a shot-glass quantity of water.
3. Soak cotton wool or sterile gauze in the solution.
4. Compress the ear/piercing with it for 10 minutes.
I intend to do this at least 2-3 times in a day. Well, that’s what the instructions said. For more information on other types of home remedies, click on this link.
In the addition to the home remedies, you can take an antibiotic (which I started immediately). You can also apply an antibacterial ointment/cream on the piercing for quicker result.
NOTE: If there are no signs of improvement after a few days. Please visit your doctor.
I can’t wait to be rid of the infection and have my piercings healed. I might still get more piercings later in the future (he he. Don’t judge me). Or maybe not? We’ll see…
I hope somebody learns a thing or two from this post.
Kindly leave a comment below if you have any, hit the like button, subscribe already and share this post. Thank you.
P.S: I wish everyone going to Nysc camp on Tuesday a safe journey (Shout-out to Uju, Mercy, Ivie and Ginika). Who was posted to Lagos? You just might run into my boo at the camp- Ginika of Life with Geenie. Wish you a good time in camp.
Wish you a lovely week Guys.
-Jasmine🌸 (Henceforth, let’s pretend that’s a Jasmine flower, shall we? *giggles and winks*).