January 19th, 2013
I received a message from a piercee who couldn't figure out why her old, established piercings were acting up:
I have several piercings all different ages some for as many as 10 years or more and not had any problems. Recently they have all began to migrate and reject and I don't understand why. Can you tell me why this would happen all of the sudden and at such volume after years of no problems at all?
Are you experiencing some kind of excessive stress right now? That can cause problems with healed piercings. If not, I'd suggest a visit to a doctor for a thorough check up. After a long history of stability, if your piercings are acting up that could indicate a health problem of some sort. Here is some information on how stress can affect you.
Please keep me posted!
She did just that, and contacted me again about three months later:
I emailed you a while ago regarding my migrating piercings. After some observation and doctor visits it was in fact due to high stress levels as you suspected.
November 26th, 2012
I received a message from a gal who had ear lobe piercings done with an ear stud gun and she experienced complications:
About 4 weeks ago I gor my ear lobe pierced with a piercing gun, and just recently one of my piercings has started to become very sore, and then today I went to clean it with a spray the piercing place gave me but as soon as I rotated it it starting oozing a lot of green pus, and then bleeding. I don't understand why this has happened as I have followed all instructions on cleaning the piercing, and I can't find any information on why the piercing is bleeding. What should I do? H.
Piercing guns do NOT meet the Association of Professional Piercers guidelines for safe piercing in terms of hygiene nor jewelry style and material. This page of the APP site has information about it: http://www.safepiercing.org/piercing/faq/#guns
Go to a competent body piercer immediately for appropriate jewelry!
All of my piercer referrals are posted on this page of my website: http://piercingbible.com/piercer-referrals
If I haven't personally worked with or trained any piercers in your area, you can check the website for a member of the Association of Professional Piercers who is local to you:
They can insert jewelry that is higher quality and a more appropriate style for healing. You may need to see a doctor but let a professional piercer get a look at you first.
These are the care instructions I suggest: http://piercingbible.com/piercing-care
November 2nd, 2012
I received a message from a piercee who I'd assisted previously. This time it was about an industrial project: two piercing in the ear cartilage connected by a single barbell.
Hi. You helped me clear up an infection last year in another piercing I have so I thought I'd contact u about a new problem I'm having with a new piercing...
I got an industrial piercing a month ago. I cleaned it 4 times a day with saline solution like the piercer advised, didn't sleep on it, didn't bother it. Well, it still hurts to the touch where the barbell enters my ear as well as throbs throughout day/night. I still can't sleep on it. Now I notice lumps at 3 entrance points. I've done a sea salt soak a day and put emu oil on the site at least once a day since noticing these lumps. I still try to clean it with saline 3 times a day. What else can I do? I attached some pics. Thank u
September 7th, 2012
I received a question and photo from a woman who has an ear cartilage piercing that is experiencing problems. Below is a somewhat condnesed version of our correspondence:
I've read your book many times, but I wanted to seek guidance from the author herself! I got my helix pierced at a tattoo and piercing parlor about 3 weeks ago. The piercer put a rather large ring in my piercing with a bead.
He then told me to clean the piercing with alcohol and Dial soap (I knew better after reading your book, so I just nodded and smiled).
Instead, I did nightly sea salt soaks, but the piercing seemed fine after about a week- in fact, it felt and appeared to be fully healed.
However, about 4 days ago, it started to feel warm and red. 2 days ago, the skin around it (basically the top half of my ear) is very warm to the touch, purplish red, and sore (the piercing throbs). However, there is no strange discharge or swelling from it- all of the discharge is clear to light yellow and it's very minimal and there is no swelling. What's going on with my piercing? The bump looks a little more irritated than usual because I just got out of sparring practice and had a good amount of contact with my ear.
Unfortunately, I was unable to go and get the jewelry changed as I left for school a few days after. The piercing is not painful, tender, or warm (although I can't lay on it, that's not surprising as I usually can't lay on my ears in general).
September 5th, 2012
I received a message from a woman whose nostril I pierced. Unfortunately, they started to give her a hard time about wearing the jewelry at work. So she got in a clear quartz crystal retainer and concealed it:
Hope your well and your travels are treating you good. Well, today is one day shy of three months from the initial nostril puncture piercing. Yay! I have pulled it off. I still have the clear retainer being covered with a hole punched micro pore skin tone bandage, but is it safe to remove now without risking the piercing site from closing? If I can remove it when having to be here at work Wed, Thurs and Fri and replace it Friday evenings upon arriving home?
Please advise when time permits.
I'm glad to hear that it is still in and that the tape has been working for you with the retainer.
Unfortunately, 3 months is the minimum time that can be expected for the piercing to epithelialize and no longer be an open wound--though it can certainly take longer for initial healing to take place. Some find the piercing takes 6-9 months or so to heal!
August 27th, 2012
I received a message from a woma who wanted to put a "belly button ring" in her vertical clitoral hood (VCH) piercing.
I just have a quick question. I got my VCH done back in the beginning of June. I was just wondering if it was safe to put a standard belly button ring in the VCH piercing, or does it require a completely different kind of ring? I was also wondering if it would be too soon to change it? It's been a very painless process and I was able to be sexually active a week after getting it pierced with no complications. Thanks for you time.
August 4th, 2012
I received a message from a gal who was having problems with an ear piercing:
I can't get a good picture of the piercing so I'll try my best to describe the situation. I got my 4th piercing on my earlobe around the end of May 2012, and I think I may have created another hole next to the actual piercing. The piercing is probably around 90% healed; the front hole is healed and never bleeds, but the back hole (where the earring comes out of) is still healing and sometimes will bleed a tiny bit. I've been cleaning my piercing with salt water and anti bacterial soap, I have not used any creams or lotions on it, it does not hurt or ache and there is no pus. However, I think I may have poked another hole at the back of my ear when I pushed the earring back through the hole after I took it out to clean it. So now, I think I have one front hole, and two holes in the back. The earring can go through the front and out the back in two separate holes, and the two back holes are not connected. Something might have ripped on the inside of the piercing. I'm trying to close one of the holes, and the skin on the new one has already formed over but the area around it looks a bit red. Should I continue to clean it as I have been doing? Or should I get it checked out?
Any information would be helpful, thanks!
Your description is good, but I'm still not going to be able to offer thorough advice without seeing you, or at least a clear, close up photo or two.
Are you wearing body jewelry or a traditional earring? When you wear body jewelry there is NO REASON to take the jewelry out to clean it!
July 3rd, 2012
Yet another recent message from a woman who got a navel piercing and she didn't think it was done properly:
Hi! I got my belly button peirced at a body peircing shop called "the purple scorpian" in Salem, MA. The lady there wasn't friendly but not rude either. She was straight to buissness & didn't ask or say anything. I saw her take out all the necessary tools out & they all looked new she cleaned me & the tools & she wore gloves. She did use a captive bead hoop & I asked if that was ok because I heard not to get those & she assured me they we're better because I'll be sweating & its the summer I confessed I was a little nervouse & I just don't want anything to go wrong but she told me after 8 weeks I can change to a barbell but she needs to start me off with this one. I just want to make sure I have nothing to worry about & I'll be ok to change to a barbell in 8 weeks.Also I did purchase the sea salt spray but is there anything else I must do. To keep it safe & for it to heal fast? All she told me was to read the instructions. I want to be as safe as possible so I can keep it healthy.I have looked things up online but I rather know from an expert. If you can please help me be educated I would appreciate it soooo much!!!!!!