Flesh Expressions Piercing Aftercare PLEASE READ ALL OF THIS INFORMATION
What to Expect: Immediately after being pierced some bleeding, swelling or tenderness are normal. If bleeding continues for more than a few days please contact your piercer. Rarely a piercing can impinge upon a nerve causing temporary numbness, tingling, loss of taste, or diminished hearing (very rare). These are usually transient troubles with no cause for alarm. During the healing process it is normal to have seous exudates (crusties) and or secretions clear to a straw color. Don’t mistake these secretions as a sign of infection. A yellowish thick fluid (pus) with a foul odor could be a sign of infection and you should contact your piercer. Never pick at the crust on your jewelry with dirty fingers! Crust will come off easily during the cleaning and/or saline soak and should be done at those times only. You may experience a flare up weeks or months into your healing process after your piercing seems to be doing fine. Don’t be alarmed just treat your piercing as if it was just pierced following all the aftercare guidelines. Always, always, always consult your piercer if you are unsure of any situaion that may arise.
Basic Hygiene: *Do not touch your piercing or surrounding with dirty hands. *Change your bedding and towels at least once a week, avoid allowing pets on your bed *Disinfect objects that may come in contact with your piercing Hands, Phones, hearing aids, eyeglasses, etc. *Avoid the exchange of bodily fluids with a partner *Do not allow personal care products to come into contact with your piercing Hairspray, Make up, lotions, etc. * Use disposable paper products for drying your piercing *Bathtubs harbor bacteria. It is better to use a shower during the healing process but if you must bathe in a tub clean your tub before bathing with a 10% bleach – 90% water solution and rinse well Rapid Healing Suggestions: Get plenty of rest, Eat nutritious balanced meals, Drink plenty of water, Avoid emotional stress, Smoking, alcohol, Drugs (legal or otherwise) may affect your immune system and cause wound healing to be extended. Avoid any and all trauma and friction to your new piercing (your exercise activities may need to be modified).
Swimming and Tanning: Don’t expose your new piercing to a hot tub, pool, lake, or ocean. If you must be in the water protect your piercing with a water proof bandage such as Nexcare water proof bandage or Tagederm transparent dressing. These type of bandages are also handy to avoid bodily fluids during sexual activity. Swimming should be avoided for at least the first month after receiving a new piercing. Tanning can permanently change the color of your skin around your piercing and damage the fresh new cells trying to develop. If you choose to tan avoid all lotions in and around your piercing. You may want to cover your piercing to avoid damage to your cells.
Saline Soaking: Saline soaking is one of the best things you can do for your new piercing. A warm mild saline soak cleans, irrigates, hydrates, Flushes out cellular matter, and rejuvenates. It also reduces crusting. Use a product sold at your piercing establishment. You may also be able to buy packets of non-iodized sea salt at health food stores and some grocery stores. The proper mix is one quarter teaspoon non- iodized sea salt to 1 cup of clean warm water. Non-Iodized sea salt is available for sale at Flesh Expressions Depending on the average healing time for your piercing saline soaks should performed twice daily for 4-5 minutes for the first half of the healing time. In other words if your piercing takes 3-6 months healing time this process should be continued for three months. After this time saline soaks can be reduced to once a day or every other day for the remainder of the average healing time. (Average healing times can be found below) How to Soak: Pour saline into a container and warm in microwave. It should be warm but not hot. If you are making your own solution You should warm the water first and then mix. Make sure the water you are using is clean. If it is questionable use distilled water. Soak for 4-5 minutes once or twice a day. Following your soak rinse with clear clean water. Use clean Paper towels, cotton swabs, or gauze to remove any matter formed on your jewelry. Be careful not to force your jewelry to move through your piercing too quickly. Depending on the location of your piercing a mug, glass, or shallow bowl will work as a soaking vessel. Small cups or a shot glass is perfect for navels and nipples. Simply lean forward and seal the container of solution over the piercing to create a vacuum. Lay back and let it soak. For ear piercing lay your ear into a shallow bowl of solution. Yes for nostril and nose piercing you should put your nose in a cup or bowl of solution to soak. For hard to soak piercing saturate sterile gauze with saline to form a small compress. Be sure to wash your soaking vessel after each use. You may want to use disposable items.
Cleansers and Soap: Avoid harm to your tissues by using a very mild liquid soap when you are cleaning your piercing while showering. Most anti-bacterial soaps are way to harsh on your tender cells. Provone medicated lotion soap is a good choice and available at most drug stores. Otherwise a mild fragrant free soft soap or Baby Shampoo/soap will work. Soap doesn’t heal piercing. Soap only cleans piercing. Using a small amount of lathered up soap and water, clean and rotate your piercing gently, removing deposits from the jewelry. Always rinse your piercing with clean water after using soap. Be gentle. It is a good idea to perform this cleaning once a day while bathing or showering throughout the entire average healing time for your piercing.
What not to use: Alcohol, Hydrogen Peroxide, Bactine, Pierced ear solutions,Any ointment including A & D, Neosporin, Bacitracin, betadine, providone-iodine, Anti-bacterial soaps, Listerine or any alcohol based mouthwash. While some of these products may produce desired short term help they are not well suited to be used on fresh piercings for any extended amount of time. They may actually destroy tissue. It is best to avoid these products Do not rotate your jewelry: No rotation is needed. You surely don’t want any germs from your jewelry to end up on the inside of your body. A small amount of rotation during cleaning, soaking, and rinsing is appropriate. Remember to be very gentle.
**Just a Note** Emu Oil has been found to have great results in helping the healing process along when used in conjunction with the methods outlined above. Compression at the entrance and exit of your new piercing will also help avoid those unsightly bumps. This is especially true for Nostril and Cartilage piercings. Using a clean paper towel or gauze soaked in warm Saline solution use a light squeezing type pressure daily. This procedure may also help eliminate those bumps after they have formed. Consult with your piercer to see if this procedure is important for your piercing.
Aftercare for oral piercing Guidelines: Use the same principles as stated above. Care is somewhat different for oral piercing. Chipped or shaved ice may calm swelling after receiving an oral piercing. Remember to suck on ice do not chew on ice. Sleeping with your head propped up the first few nights will minimize overnight swelling. Cleaning and Hygiene: Rinsing with a non-alcoholic mouthwash up to five times a day. You should rinse after you eat or drink anything other than water. Rinse after smoking. Chewing tobacco or snuff can be very harmful to your piercing and should not be used. Rinse before bedtime. You can also use a saline rinse instead of the mouthwash (see saline procedures above). Do not chew on pens, fingernails, eye glasses, or put any foreign object into your mouth. Performing oral sex is not healthy during the first few weeks of healing. Remember your piercing is an open wound caution should be taken for sexual activities such as oral sex and French kissing. Buy a new tooth brush.
IMPORTANT!! Do not follow the advise of a friend or information found on the internet!! If you would like to use an alternative aftercare method not mentioned here, please consult with your piercer first!! If you choose to follow an aftercare regime different from the one we have outlined, we cannot be responsible for the results. You have been pierced by an educated piercer who is up to date on aftercare procedures and medical situations concerning your piercing. Body Piercing is a continuing evolving art. No matter who you choose to do your piercing be sure they are well informed and continue education. If you have questions don’t hesitate to ask before, during or after your procedure. If you are unsure about anything during your healing process please contact your piercer.
Migration and/or Rejection: Migration or rejection can occur from using too harsh of an aftercare product. Sometimes however there is no known reason. It is simply one of the risks associated with inserting a foreign object into your body. Some locations are more likely to migrate or be rejected. If you were pierce by a competent educated and experienced piercer and your body has rejected your piercing it is probably best to consider not having that piercing done again. Chances are the outcome will be the same.
After care for some locations including male and female genitals will be discussed with you at the time of or prior to your procedure.
This is a general guide for piercing aftercare and can not cover every aspect you may encounter. If you have questions please ask. Infections If you feel that your piercing has become infected please consult with you piercer. Many times your piercing will just be irritated and/or dried out. Your piercer can help choose the proper procedure for you. Taking out an infected piercing could very well be a bad idea. Closing up an infection in your body could cause additional medical problems. Just remember…wash your hands before touching your piercing (no exceptions). Also sanitize anything that may come in contact with your piercing. Piercings will not become infected unless bacteria is introduced to the area. Trauma and/or improper aftercare products can cause a new piercing to seem infected. Inserting jewelry that is not sterile can cause infections (wait until your piercing is fully healed before changing the jewelry) Thank you for choosing Flesh Expressions Healing Times Healing times can vary for numerous reasons including your health, how well you follow aftercare procedures, or if you cause trauma to your piercing.
*Healing times for male and female genital piercing will be discussed with your piercer *average healing times* Ear Cartilage 3-9 months Ear Lobes 4-8 weeks Eye brow 4-8 weeks Labret 6-8 weeks *Lip 4-6 weeks *Upper lip 2-3 months *Navel 6-9 months or longer *Nipple female 4-9 months *Nipple male 2-3 months *Nostril 1-4 months *Septum 4-8 weeks *Surface 6-12 months *Tongue 4-8 weeks
Do not change your jewelry yourself before the minimum healing time stated above. If you must change your jewelry before that time consult with your piercer and he/she can do the procedure for you. It is best to use high quality jewelry in your piercing. There is a lot of inexpensive low quality jewelry available via the internet or mall stores. If you are unsure consult with your piercer.
Flesh Expressions will not pierce you with jewelry bought outside the shop (with some exceptions). If we are confident the jewelry is top quality you will need to leave the jewelry with the piercer to be sterilized and make an appointment to come back for your procedure. Even if we are inserting jewelry in an existing piercing we will need to sterilize the jewelry. Remember Aftercare products will clean, irrigate, and hydrate but do not heal a piercing Your body heals your piercing.