What Are the Best Tips for Ear Piercing Aftercare?

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  • Written By: Christina Edwards
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 16 September 2019
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Proper ear piercing aftercare is imperative to prevent scarring and infection. Piercings should be cleaned a couple times a day, and a person should also use clean fingers to turn the new earrings several times a day. New piercings should not be removed for several weeks, since the holes will heal and the ears will usually need to be repierced. The ears should also not come in contact with any harsh chemicals or snug ear accessories.

New piercings are susceptible to infection, particularly if bacteria enters the holes. An infection in this area is painful and can lead to scarring. To minimize the possibility of bacteria entering the holes, good ear piercing aftercare is very important.

Cleaning the new piercings is one of the most important parts of proper ear piercing aftercare. To do this, the holes in the ears should be washed with a saline solution. Cotton swabs can also be dipped into saline solution and gently rubbed on the ears, if necessary. Alcohol or hydrogen peroxide should not be used to clean new piercings, since these can cause irritation and prolong healing time.

If a new earring is not spun around, the ear may heal around the earring post. Spinning the earring is often recommended as part of ear piercing aftercare. Before doing this, the hands should be washed well with soap and hot water. The front of the earring can then be twirled around a few times.


It is also very important that the earring stay in the ear until the piercing is completely healed, which will usually take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months. Removing an earring before the piercing hole heals completely can make it very hard for a person to insert the earring back in the hole. If the earring is removed and the piercing heals, the ear will usually need to be repierced, either in a different part of the ear or through scar tissue, which can be very difficult.

New piercings should also not be exposed to harsh chemicals, since these can cause irritation. Shampoo and hair spray should be kept away from the ears. A person should also not use hair color or other chemical treatments on the hair until the ears have healed completely. Anything that puts pressure on the ears, such as ear muffs or headphones, should be avoided as well.

Watching for signs of infection is another important part of ear piercing aftercare. An infected piercing will usually be red and warm. It will also usually leak white, gray, yellow, or green foul-smelling discharge, known as pus. An earring in an infected pierced ear should not be removed until it is examined by a doctor. If the earring is removed before it is treated, the surface of the hole may heal before the inside does, which can cause an abscess.


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Discuss this Article

Post 3

@spotiche5- It is also best if you avoid allowing hot water and soap to run over your newly-pierced ears in the shower for the first few days. This also can be painful, and soap can be irritating to your earlobes while they are healing.

Post 2

Anyone with newly-pierced ears will also find that it is important to try to sleep on your back for several days to a week or so as they begin to heal. Not only will sleeping on your sides put pressure on your pierced ears, but it will also hurt!

Post 1

When I was in high school, I got my ears pierced and ended up with an infection in one of them. It swelled up more than twice the normal size, was red and very sore. I had to take an antibiotic for several weeks.

If you notice any of the symptoms of an ear piercing infection that this article points out, see your doctor as soon as possible to get the infection under control. Don't try to treat it by yourself with over-the-counter remedies, because you will most likely need a prescription medication.

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