Aftercare

  • Outside the Mouth:

    • Warm/Hot Water Soaks help to stimulate air and blood circulation which accelerates healing by dilating capillaries and blood vessels. It will also help loosen the tissue to help drain bacteria that may be trapped in the piercing. This will also help to reduce irritation in the area.
    • You should do a warm-hot distilled water soak at least once a day to help drain the piercing and generate more blood flow to the area. Seal a clean cup on the area and soak directly for 5-10 minutes. The more often you do this the faster and more comfortably you should heal.
    • A good time to soak is after a shower to help clean out soaps, shampoos, face washes, and whatever dirt was on your body from the day before. Rather than worrying about cleaning your piercing all the time, worry more about keeping it clean.
    • You only need to clean your piercing if you know you got it dirty (swimming, makeup, touching, licking, etc.).
    • The best cleaning agent we’ve found is Body Art Pro’s Simple Aftercare Spray. Otherwise, simple, generic saline solutions for sensitive eyes can help as well. The bottle for these should read, “sterile, isotonic, buffered saline.” They are very easy to find at most chain pharmacies.
    • Along with your daily warm water soaks, squirt or spray the Simple Aftercare Spray or saline over the piercing after anytime you know you may have gotten it dirty and allow it to soak into the piercing. Amo Lens Plus is a brand of saline I found in a spray with no preservatives at all.
    • Sea salts are natural antiseptics you can buy at natural food stores, and many food markets.
      • Dissolve 1/8 teaspoon of non-iodized salt (sea salt or kosher salt) into one 8 oz cup of warm or hot DISTILLED water in a clean cup (A stronger solution is not better as you can dry and irritate your piercing with too much salt).
      • Even easier is to buy a gallon of distilled water and mix in 3 teaspoons of sea salt. Pour this mixture into a clean cup and microwave for your soaks. Seal it on the area and soak directly for 5-10 minutes.
      • If it stings at all when you soak or gets dry or itchy afterward, you probably have too much salt in the water.
      • Follow with a clear water rinse or splash then pat dry with disposable paper products.
      • Do not use a regular iodized table salt. These are too strong and over-drying.
    • Do not use alcohol, peroxide, Neosporin, betadine, bactine, etc.
      • Those products are overly strong and drying, and they kill off the healthy cells your body needs to heal. Antibiotic ointments (i.e. Neosporin) do not allow for proper air circulation, and they form a sticky residue that easily attracts particles and in which bacteria can grow once the short lived antibiotic properties of the ointment are gone. Ointments do not wash off so you end up washing the ointment instead of your new piercing.
    • Never touch your piercing. Do not rotate the jewelry, it will dislodge healed tissue and irritate the piercing with the friction from the movement. Your body will secrete plasma and lymph fluid during healing that will become crusty when it dries – soak it off don’t pick it off.
    • If you are not cleaning or soaking your piercing, just try to ignore it.
    • There is NO reason to EVER take out your piercing during cleanings.

    Inside the Mouth:

    • Sea salts or Saline can be used on the inside of the mouth as well, and are recommended. The same water/salt ratio.
    • If you choose a different antiseptic rinse, find one with no alcohol content.
      • These include Rembrandt, Oral B, Biotene, Tech 2000, and several Tom’s of Maine products.
      • (Listerine contains as much alcohol as many beers, which is NOT recommended. It will cause extra swelling and kill off healthy tissue cells during healing).
    • For the inside of the mouth with tongue piercings and lip piercings, you will want to rinse out with your antiseptic after any bacteria gets in your mouth from food, drink, smoking, kissing, biting your finger nails, chewing on a pencil, etc. Rinse for 30 seconds each time.
    • To keep swelling down, Ibuprofin or Advil are great anti-inflammatory medications. I suggest taking 3 directly after your piercing and 3 more later that day. Ice, popsicles, ice cream, milkshakes, etc. will also help to keep swelling down, but be sure to rinse out with your antiseptic afterward.
    • For the first two days, stick to softer foods as too much chewing will put unnecessary stress on the piercing and prolong swelling.
    • For the first week at least, avoid alcohol, hot foods and spicy foods, and foods or drinks with high citric acid content. Reducing smoking or quitting is highly advisable when healing an oral piercing. Smoking increases risks of infection and can lengthen the healing time.
    • No oral sexual contact including French (wet) kissing or oral sex during the entire initial healing period, even if you are in a monogamous relationship, for at least two weeks.