When piercings attack: dealing with the consequences

Piercing any part of the body means exactly that − making a hole in the body. As this is basically an unnatural procedure, any body piercing carries risks; however, some piercings are more problematic than others.

When piercings attack

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The risks of body piercing

According to the NHS, the most common risk associated with piercing is bacterial infection. Other general problems can include bleeding, swelling and scarring around the site of the piercing. Some piercings, such as those to the genitals or tongue, may interfere with bodily functions and can pose a higher risk of problems.

Problems with ear piercing

Although the hard cartilage around the ear can be pierced, the ear lobe is the most common site for piercing, according to Family Doctor. In most cases there are no problems, as long as appropriate aftercare is carried out, but over time earlobes can become torn or stretched. As they consist of fat and skin, the earlobes are vulnerable to damage. Wearing heavy earrings can weigh them down and they can become elongated. If an earring is snagged on clothes or pulled, such as by a baby, it can cause the earlobe to split and need to be repaired. In larger cities such as London earlobe repairs can be carried out under local anaesthetic, while elongated earlobes can be reduced in size.

Earlobe repairs

Before earlobe repair is undertaken, the doctor will examine the earlobes to assess their suitability for repair. The procedure, which can be carried out at clinics such as http://londoncosmeticskinclinic.co.uk/, is non-invasive. It involves removing a little skin on the stretched or torn lobe, which is known as ‘freshening’, prior to carrying out the repair using extremely fine stitches. Once the repair or reconstruction has been carried out, the area is dressed and you can go home.

After treatment, the bandages can be removed after a couple of hours. A saline solution is usually applied twice daily for the first few days and the area must otherwise be kept dry; therefore, you should not wash your hair during this time. The clinic will prescribe antibiotic cream to apply until your sutures are removed.

If you want to have your ears pierced again, you should wait for a minimum of six months following earlobe repair and the new piercing should not be in the same location.

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