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Healing time varies between people and depends on how fast your body heals and how well you take care of the piercing. During the healing period, the piercing will normally secrete a clear or whitish fluid that dries on the jewelry called eschar. This is not pus and its presence does not indicate a problem unless it changes color or is accompanied by heat, excessive redness, or swelling. As your piercing heals, you will see less and less secretion. The initial healing is complete when you have no trace of the secretions for at least a full month. It is after that initial healing time that you may change the jewelry as you wish or enlarge the piercing to accommodate jewelry of a thicker gauge. Keep your aftercare simple. The product itself that you put on the piercing does not heal it. You are simply setting the environment for your body to heal itself. Thoroughly clean your new piercing twice a day. Do not clean your piercing more than twice a day because overdoing it will clean away the new skin cells forming in the area. Do not use rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide as they can be exceptionally drying and can kill new cell growth that is essential to healing. Do not use any sort of antibiotics unless by specific prescription. Do not use any ointments such as Neosporin, Polysporin or Bacitracin. They block oxygen from getting to the piercing and the thick consistency even provides a place for germs to grow. Antibiotics should be unnecessary when you have a piercing done under strict aseptic conditions. Furthermore, the product labels warn against use on puncture wounds. Please note: We do not suggest common chemicals like chlorhexidine (Hibiclens), iodine (Betadine), or benzethonium or benzalkonium chloride solution (Bactine or Ear Care). Despite some peoples' luck with these agents, we have developed a different routine as defined below. We have had the opportunity in our careers to witness many thousands of clients healing their piercings and have researched all of the substances we use in our studio and suggest for aftercare. Our decisions are based upon collective professional piercing experience and our own research and development. FOR NON-ORAL PIERCINGS: Always wash your hands well with liquid antibacterial soap before you touch your piercing. Soaking your piercing in mild salt water twice a day increases blood flow to the area which can help speed healing. It will also feel soothing if your piercing is irritated. The best time to soak is right before your shower because the soak will draw matter out of the piercing and it is necessary to rinse afterwards. If you do not want to shower twice a day, you can rinse the piercing with clean water soaks as described below. Be sure to use disposable cups for both soaks and rinses, as reusing the same one will cause a buildup of germs in the cup and result in ineffective cleaning or even harm. Fill a cup with 8 ounces of very warm water- as hot as you can comfortably take it- and add ¼ tsp or less of plain natural sea salt (without added fragrance, color or iodine to avoid irritation). The water should be no saltier than the taste of your tears, as this is your body's natural salt balance. Cup this over your piercing and let it soak for 10-15 minutes. If your piercing is in an area where cupping is difficult, dip a clean disposable tissue, paper towel, or a gauze pad into the water and gently press it against the area for the same amount of time. You will have to renew occasionally to keep the compress warm. If the salt soaks cause your piercing to become dry, use less salt. If you can't take a shower to rinse, use a new cup to soak in plain warm water, changing the water several times for thorough rinsing. While rinsing in the shower or with soaks, gently remove any dried matter that has accumulated on the jewelry using a Q-tip or freshly washed hands.. They will be softened after soaking. It is important to remove these secretions thoroughly because moving them through the piercing can harm the delicate new skin. To rinse the inside, gently rotate the jewelry through the piercing several times. Wipe dry with a disposable paper product in order to avoid the germs and lint that live in cloth towels. If your piercing is near or through the urethra, urinate after you clean the piercing. Your own urine is nonpathogenic (safe) to your body as long as you do not have a urinary tract or bladder infection, or similar condition. FOR ORAL PIERCINGS: Any time you put anything in your mouth (including food, drink, gum, or any smoking materials), you must clean your piercing afterward. Do so by brushing your teeth and tongue (avoiding the area directly around the piercing) after you eat or snack, then rinse for a full minute with a salt water solution of 8 ounces lukewarm or cold water with ¼ teaspoon of plain natural sea salt (without fragrance, color, or iodine to avoid irritation). Do not use hot water, as heat may interfere with the decrease of swelling. The water should be no saltier than the taste of your tears, as this is your body's natural salt balance. Oral piercings may experience some mild cramping or swelling as a natural part of the healing process. You have a lot of control over how much swelling your piercing experiences, depending on how faithfully you attend to the aftercare. IN ADDITION TO CLEANING YOUR PIERCING FAITHFULLY, FOLLOW THESE IMPORTANT GUIDELINES TO HELP KEEP YOUR PIERCING HAPPY: Tips FOR ORAL PIERCINGS: For the first week, suck on ice as often as possible and drink plenty of liquids. This helps reduce soreness and aids in bringing any swelling down. Stay away from caffeine, alcohol, tobacco, food and drinks that are spicy or hot in temperature, and all smoking materials. They are irritating to a fresh piercing and can interfere with your healing. We add extra room to your starting jewelry to accomodate for possible swelling. Generally, this swelling lasts between a few days to a week, sometimes longer for smokers. You can get a smaller piece to fit the piercing flush once the swelling goes down. You should be able to eat and talk and do everything you normally do, but you may find yourself taking it a bit slower. You can usually get a closer fitting piece in about two weeks. If your jewelry feels tight or uncomfortable, call us immediately for a new size. SMOKERS (of anything) can expect a longer healing time in general for oral piercings. If you cannot quit completely, then at least cut down as much as possible. General TIPS: Always wash your hands well with liquid antibacterial soap before you touch your piercing. How well you care for your piercing while it is healing determines how it will eventually look and feel. Plan to do everything you can to avoid germs and irritation. Do not move the jewelry except while you are cleaning it. There is no need to keep moving it periodically through the day. In fact, this can easily cause irritation. Your new piercing should look good and feel comfortable. If this is not the case, your body is trying to tell you something. As always, feel free to stop by or call when something does not seem quite right.(303)935-8525 Be sure to keep soap, shampoo, and other bathing products out of your fresh piercing as they are not intended for use on wounds and can cause problems. Keep tight clothes off your new piercing. Anything that pushes jewelry away from where it naturally rests is an invitation to irritation. Navels can be particularly susceptible to irritation from clothing. If you wear pants with a tight waistband, you can undo the top button, unzip a little if necessary, and fold the flaps inwards towards your body. This will form a v-shaped notch that keeps the area around it clear. If you wear pantyhose, you can cut a small slit at the top and it will do the same. Invent your own tricks to make your clothes work with your new piercing! Avoid sleeping or laying on your new piercing. If you swim, check out Tegaderm, Duoderm, or CleanSeal patches at a pharmacy. These dressings will let oxygen through, but not water and germs. Hot tubs, swimming pools, and natural bodies of water are teeming with microorganisms and chemicals that can greatly disturb your new piercing. The kind with a gauze insert is best so that the dressing will not stick to your jewelry. Take care of your body in general. Recreational drug use, alcohol, tobacco, and any other body stressor will slow healing. Keep other peoples' body fluids away from your new piercing. This is important even if you have a monogamous sex partner. Use barriers (latex or condoms, dental dams, gloves, etc.) until your healing is complete. If you exercise, plan to clean your piercing directly afterwards if it will get sweaty. Your sweat mixes with germs on your skin, so keep it clean and dry. Removing the jewelry can cause the hole to shrink, sometimes quickly, and can make reinsertion difficult even after your piercing has healed. If you must remove your jewelry for any amount of time, you can keep the piercing open by wearing a non porous, inert plastic such as nylon (uncolored weed-whacker line) or tygon. This is safe for x-ray, CAT scan, MRI, and most surgery. Eating a balanced diet is an important part of your overall health. Vitamins can be included as part of your aftercare. Check out a good multivitamin or ask a nutritionist for more specific suggestions. Infection is unlikely if you keep your piercing clean. Symptoms can include excessive heat, excessive redness, soreness, swelling, and/or a discharge of pus. If you sense any trouble, please do not hesitate to contact us or your physician. If you do not feel comfortable consulting your regular physician, ask us about piercing-friendly physicians. DO NOT REMOVE THE JEWELRY IF TROUBLE ARISES. Removing jewelry when irritation or an infection arises can be dangerous because it can trap germs and particles inside, which may lead to more a serious condition such as an abcess or difficulty treating the infection.
We are not medical professionals and our suggestions should not be construed as medical advice nor considered a substitute.

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