Piercing Aftercare

If your computer is on the fritz or you haven’t gotten that shiny new iPad yet and love printing things then for your entertainment we have the full Aftercare instructions right here!

Oxy Fresh or TLC mouth rince diluted with distilled or bottled water (not tap water) according to package instructions as an oral irrigator. These are available in the oral medications section of most drugstores. Also: mild sea salt water rinses. Dissolve a pinch (1/4 teaspoon) non-iodized (iodine free) sea salt to one cup (8 oz.) warm to hot water. A Large batch of salt water soak can be mixed with 4 tablespoons of sea salt with 1 gallon of distilled water. Avoid hot water for the first few days. If you have high blood pressure or heart problems, you will need to limit your frequency with the sea salt and use only plain warm water rinses.

Rinse mouth for 30-60 seconds with solution (see Cleaning Solutions above) after meals during the entire minimum initial healing time. Do not use more than 4-5 times daily and use it over intervals spaced throughout the entire day.
Rinse mouth briefly (10-15 seconds) with mild sea salt mixture (see recipe above) no more than twice a day. If you are cleaning too often, the top of your tongue will start to turn white or yellowish color. Continue to clean your piercing but reduce the number of times you are cleaning it per day.
A new soft bristled toothbrush should be purchased to help reduce the bacteria that is introduced into your mouth.
IBUPROFEN or Tylenol based pain relievers are able to be used. Please avoid Aspirin based pain relievers as the blood thinning properties of Aspirin can slow the healing process.

Swelling of the area is perfectly normal during the first part of the healing of an oral piercing. It can be greatly reduced by gently sucking (rather than chewing) on clean ice. Chipped, shaved ice, or small cubes are best. The majority of the swelling usually lasts for only 3-5 days.
Any new piercing can bleed off an on for a few days. There can also be some bleeding under the surface resulting in temporary bruising or discoloration. This is perfectly normal and not indicative of complications.
Some tenderness or discomfort in the area of the new piercing is not unusual. You may feel aching, pinching, tightness or other unpleasant sensations off and on for several days or longer.
Don’t be alarmed if you see a fairly liquid, yellowish secretion coming from the piercing. This is blood plasma, lymph and dead cells which is perfectly normal. All healing piercings secrete, it looks different inside the mouth as it doesn’t have a chance to dry and form a crust as it does on ear or body piercings. This is not puss, but indicates a healing piercing.
Plaque may form on the tongue jewelry, commonly on the bottom ball and/or post. Scrub your barbell with a soft bristled toothbrush (gently during healing). If you are diligent with oral hygiene the jewelry will not need to be removed for cleaning and can usually be left in even for routine visits to the dentist.
Piercings may have a tendency to have a series of ups and downs during healing by seeming healed and then regressing. Try to be patient and do keep cleaning during the entire initial healing time, even if the piercing seems healed sooner.
Each body is unique, and healing times can vary considerably. If you have any questions please contact Ed at Hula Moon.
Once initial swelling is down, having Ed replace the post portion of bar style jewelry with a shorter post may be wise. Jewelry which fits more closely is less likely to irritate your mouth or get between your teeth and be bitten.
If you like your piercing, leave the jewelry in at all times. Even healed piercings can shrink or close in minutes after having been there for years! This varies from person to person and even if your ear lobe piercings stay open without jewelry your oral piercing may not!
Keep following the care procedures during thee entire minimum initial healing time, even if the piercing seems healed sooner.

A mild liquid anti microbial/germicidal medicated soap such as Provone or Satin, and water. Inferior alternatives include products such as Almay Clearly Natural, Hypocare, NutriBiotic, or other mild fragrance and color free liquid antibacterial soaps. These should possibly be diluted with distilled or bottled water, depending on product strength. Also, mild non-iodized (no iodine) sea salt soas as described below.

Mild sea salt water soaks are strongly suggested at least once a day to accelerate healing and increase your comfort. This may also help to reduce irritation to the area. Dissolve a pinch (1/4 teaspoon) non-iodized (iodine free) sea salt to one cup (8 oz.) warm to hot water. A Large batch of salt water soak can be mixed with 4 tablespoons of sea salt with 1 gallon of distilled water. A stronger solution is not better as you can burn your piercing with too much salt. Invert it over the area to form a vacum and soak directly for a few minutes. For certain placements it is easier to use a clean cotton ball or gauze pad soaked in the salt water and applied to the pierced area. Follow with clear water rinse or splash then pat dry with paper products.
Salt water soaks help to stimulate air and blood circulation which facilitates healing. You can do a brief salt water soak before your daily cleaning(s) as well as several additional times a day. It is particularly advisable to soak before you do anything active as it will prevent crust brom being pulled inside the piercing as you move around. Salt water is the only additional product (other than the cleanser and water) we suggest you use to care for your piercing.
One soak per day should be for 3 to 5 minutes. Additional soaks can be brief (1 minute or so) and still be effective for soothing the area and removing matter.

Body piercings need to be cleaned once or twice daily, every day, for the entire initial healing time. Most people clean morning and/or night, in the shower. Do not clean more often as this can irritate your piercing and possibly delay your healing. For once-a-day cleanings, do it at the end of your day. Optimal frequency will depend on your skin sensitivity, activity level, and environmental factors. Before cleanings wash hands thoroughly with liquid antibacterial soap and hot water. If you wish, you may wear disposable latex or vinyl gloves and/or also use sanitizing gel. Never ever touch healing piercings with dirty hands. This is vital for avoiding infections.
Prepare the area for the cleansing by rinsing or soaking with warm water and be sure to remove any stubborn crust using a cotton swab and warm water. Never pick with fingernails! This step is important for your comfort.
Apply a small handful of cleaning solution to the area with your clean hands. Cleanse the area and the jewelry. If the piercing isn’t tender and the jewelry will move freely, gently rotate the jewelry back and forth a few times to work the solution to the inside. You do not need to rotate the jewelry during the first several cleanings.
Allow the solution to cleanse there for a minute. You may bath normally, just don’t purposely work anything other than the cleanser onto the inside of the piercing.
Rinse the area thoroughly under running water, while rotating the jewelry back and forth to completely remove the cleanser from inside and outside the piercing
Gently pat dry with disposable paper products such as gauze or tissues, as cloth towels can harbor bacteria.
Please try to be patient. Each body is unique and healing times can vary considerably. If your piercing is tender or secreting you should continue the care regimen, even if it is past the stated average healing time.

Bleeding, bruising, discoloration and/or swelling is not uncommon. Any break in the skin, including a new piercing can bleed or bruise. These are not indications of any complication. Reduce intake of aspirin, alcohol, and caffeine. For above-the-neck piercings try sleeping with your head elevated above your heart (prop up on some pillows) to limit overnight swelling. Studies show non-steroidal anti-inflammatory products such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, etc.) can help minimize swelling
Some tenderness or discomfort in the area of a new piercing is not unusual. You may feel stinging, burning, aching or other unpleasant sensations off and on for several days or longer. During healing there may be some itching.
Secretion of a fluid which contains blood plasma, lymph and dead cells is perfectly normal. It is fairly liquid, whitish-yellow in color and forms a crust on the jewelry at the opening of the piercing. This is not puss, but indicates a healed piercing.
Once healed your piercing may secrete a semi-solid white malodorous substance from the oil glands called sebum. This is not puss, but indicates a healed piercing.
Piercings may have a tendency to have a series of “ups and downs” during healing by seeming healed and then regressing. Try to be patient and do not keep cleaning during the entire initial healing time, even if the piercing seems healed sooner.
Tightness is normal. Do not expect jewelry to swing freely in most body piercings, even after they are thoroughly healed.

Don’t apply alcohol, peroxide, Betadine, Hibiclens or antibacterial soap as they are overly strong and drying, which can hinder healing.
Don’t apply any ointment such as Bacitracin, Neosporin or any triple antibiotic ointment to your piercing. These prevent oxygen from reaching the wound and form a sticky residue which can cause complications.
Avoid oral contact, rough play, and contact with others’ bodily fluids on or near your piercing during healing.
No bandaids on a healing piercing. They limit air circulation and the adhesive can irritate the surrounding area.
Try to avoid sleeping directly on the piercing during the initial healing period.
Don’t hang charms or any object from your jewelry until the piercing is fully healed.
Don’t submerge your piercings in water such as pools, lakes, jacuzzis, ect. Most bodies of water harbor large amounts of bacteria. If there is sea life, motor oil, or children in the water it is not clean enough!
Use a breathable, non water permeable wound sealant such as Tegaderm or Clean Seals (available at drugstores and pharmacies) before you go in, to protect yourself and prevent dirty water from getting inside your open wound. Cleaning afterwards is not likely to be effective in preventing infection

Exercise during healing is fine. Just “listen” to your body. Try to avoid activities that put undue stress on the area. Your own sweat and body fluids are not harmful to your piercing, provided you clean daily as directed



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