I received a message from a woman who needed advice about her hood piercing:
I removed my HCH piercing when I was pregnant with my 3 year old. I couldn't get the piercing in after I had the baby. About a month ago my husband and I decided to try again. We used his cock piercing ring which was a bigger gauge with a bigger ball because we were unable to place the ball on my ring. Within 3 days I could barely walk due to the piercing. I am not sure if the gauge was too big on his ring for my piercing or we didn't clean everything properly. I am healed now and I want to put the piercing in again. What is the proper way to clean the ring and what is the best size? Or is there a trick to those pesky closing balls?
Thanks in advance for your help!
Inserting an even larger size after a piercing has been out is a recipe for problems. So is inserting jewelry that has not been sterilized in an autoclave.
Is there a reason you don't want to get help from a professional piercer? We have tools called insertion tapers that allow us to gently insert jewelry. There is a bit of a trick to getting the balls in, and most piercers are very adept at it!
This is a brief introduction to insertion tapers from my book:
Also called insertion pins, insertion needles, or simply tapers, these tools are used to facilitate jewelry insertion and to stretch piercings to a thicker gauge (see “Insertion Tapers for Jewelry Changes,” page 220, and “Stretching,” page 224). They look similar to needles, but there are differences. Tapers are not sharp, though they may be a little pointy in the thinner sizes. Also, they are solid, not hollow like piercing needles. The back end is formed into a concave, convex, threaded, or other shape to fit with specific styles of jewelry. Using the right type is key to ensure the successful transfer of jewelry into a piercing. They come in every standard jewelry gauge and are sized by the mea- surement at the thicker end. The thinner tip is usually two gauge sizes smaller than the larger end to assure a smooth gradation over its two inches or so of length. Tapers are commonly made of implant-grade stainless steel, though acrylic and other materials are also used.
The best jewelry size is dependent upon your build and the placement of your piercing, so I couldn't say from here.... even with a photo it is difficult due to lack of accurate visual scale. I have a referrals page here: http://piercingbible.com/piercer-referrals perhaps one of them is near you?
For future reference:
Some women deliver babies with genital jewelry in place without experiencing adverse consequences. However, it is prudent to remove all metal jewelry from genital piercings prior to childbirth to avoid the possibility of tearing the piercing or causing trauma to the baby during birth. It is improbable that piercings of the hood (HCH, VCH, or triangle) could cause problems; labia piercings are more apt to get in the way. Talk to your doctor or midwife about their policy on piercings so that you can be prepared when delivery day arrives. If you intend to wear a genital piercing during childbirth, it should be small enough to avoid catching or interference, but large enough to accommodate engorgement and local swelling. Depending on hospital policy, you may be able to leave genital jewelry in place if a caesarean section is planned.
Elayne Angel, Author
The Piercing Bible--The Definitive Guide to Safe Body Piercing
President, Association of Professional Piercers